Feb 20 2007
02:59 pm
By: talidapali  shortURL

Not to mention frustrating and maddening.

The Future of Food

Kind of makes me not want to eat...ever again.

Feb 20 2007
02:57 pm
By: Malcolm Tent  shortURL

County Mayor Ragsdale's actions in today's commission seem like the actions of a desperate man. First Ragsdale apparently calls the governor to see if Bredesen can get this thing taken care of. Bredesen offers this in reply: “I regret to report that there is apparently little we can do." The phrasing of this reply obviously implies that Ragsdale was in desperate search to circumvent the commission on the appointment process.
Next Ragsdale calls for the commission to lobby the state legislature, with dog and pony show included, to change the political process to entail a special election. They even tried a little hoodwink action for the commission by offering that the ability to hold special elections would be a good tool to have for future use.
Lastly, Ragsdale tries to slide through a ramshackle ethics committee who's task it would be to handle ethical complaints about county officials. Ragsdale was obviously counciled that the Tyler Harber issue may be able to be killed in this Ethics Committee thus absolving him from future scrutiny.
Hooray for commission for seeing through this ruse. Ragsdale's actions imply more about his guilt than the Sherriff's office findings do. This thing is starting to look a little like the political version of a police chase. Ragsdale knows his days are numbered and is making a last ditch effort to keep his control, if not to keep his keester out of jail.

2% (4 votes)
5% (11 votes)
8% (19 votes)
0% (1 vote)
38% (84 votes)
0% (0 votes)
2% (4 votes)
22% (49 votes)
10% (22 votes)
2% (4 votes)
12% (26 votes)
Total votes: 224

Knoxville News Sentinel Editor Jack McElroy has instructed his attorney Rick Hollow to offer a settlement to Knox County Commissioners to drop its Sunshine Law lawsuit if the County Commissioners have a do-over of the January 31 appointment meeting which brought eight replacement Commissioners into office.

At what point should the citizens of Knox County question Mr. McElroy’s judgment and conduct? E.W. Scripps Company has a very specific Ethics Code. In this code are very specific guidelines regulating participation in political and governmental affairs. Today’s settlement offer is troubling and disturbing.

There is no provision in either the Knox County Charter or the Tennessee State Constitution for a do-over for the January 31st appointment process. Time and time again Mr. McElroy has shown a preference to defend the County Mayor and attack his opposition. There is not much that can be done in areas of Editorial judgment. However, this is a different matter. I hope County Commission chooses to fight Mr. McElroy in court and that they draw a line in the sand. This kind of heavy handed interference in the administration of local government cannot be condoned. It is outrageous and Mr. McElroy should be sanctioned by the E.W. Scripps Company corporation.

Is this a matter of principle, or is it a matter of intimidation? The section of the E.W. Scripps Company Ethics Code is listed below.



There are at least three actions in play in this whole mess:

Mayor Ragsdale: Special Election September 2007.

Herb Moncier: Sunshine Law violation jury verdict.

Jack McElroy: Sunshine Law violation do-over.


Feb 20 2007
01:49 pm


What will this accomplish? Can they just simply reappoint the same 12 folks and rub everyone's face in it?

Feb 20 2007
12:18 pm
By: Andy Axel  shortURL

Fresh from his Sunday editorial entitled Victory Is Not An Option, former Reagan NSA chief William Odom gets in a tussle with Hugh Hewitt.

The outcome doesn't make Hewitt look good at all. Hewitt throws every defense of the Iraq strategy at him, and General Odom parries every point. General Odom destroys every historical analogy that Hewitt offers in defense by providing much-needed (and continuously ignored) context.

I normally don't advocate going to Townhall, but this is a must read.

A sample:

WO: Look, I mean, I…this a kind of a pointless argument. I mean, the issues…all of your things can be true. They don’t make it any better for us. We are on a path to suffer every month we stay. The defeat we face will be larger, and we will put off the time at which…and where we will have even less resources to recover. If you remember the Second World War, Hitler had 600,000 troops thrown into Stalingrad, refused over four, five months to withdraw them, at the plea by, from his generals, and he ends up losing them all. If he had withdrawn them as they said, asked him to do, and let Stalingrad go, he could have shortened his lines by seven or eight hundred kilometers, and had nearly, had over 600,000 troops survive. Now that’s…a military commander that doesn’t know when to retire from one area so he can approach the conflict from another area, is not a smart commander. And it seems to you’re advocating a kind of policy where you have a president who jumps off the Empire State Building, and he goes by the 50th floor, and he says I’m on course. Well, I want a president who knows how to change course.

(More after the jump…)


Feb 20 2007
11:53 am

Empowering Veterans, Inc. Unveils its "Worst 10" list of incumbent Senators up for reelection in 2008. These people are very pious in the "Support the Troops" rhetoric, but most hypocritical when it comes to voting to support members of the Armed Forces and their families and veterans and their families.

Well, he made the top spot because his name starts with an A, I guess, so it isn't fair to say Alexander is the MOST hypocritical Senator, but he does have some explaining to do and he is up for reelection in '08.

This could be interesting. Could Lamar get swept out with the rest of the republicans?

Feb 20 2007
09:51 am
By: WhitesCreek  shortURL

"A plausible scenario for a military collision with Iran involves Iraqi failure to meet the benchmarks; followed by accusations of Iranian responsibility for the failure; then by some provocation in Iraq or a terrorist act in the U.S. blamed on Iran..."

This piece has way too many solid links for me to shorten it for you. Suffice it to say that Bush appears hellbent on World War Three, only this time, George W. Bush plays the part of Hitler.

Must Read

Will Bob Corker step up and stop him?

Feb 20 2007
09:50 am

You can watch on Knox County Community Television on Comcast Cable Channel 12 and Charter Cable Channel 6. YouTube Nine coverage later.

This meeting will discuss a special election to replace County Commissioners, the vote on Mayor Ragsdale's appointments to the ethics committee, and as quoted in the News Sentinel, "will consider Commission Chairman Scott Moore's request that commission give a public airing to Sheriff's Office employees who investigated allegations of dirty political tricks performed by former Ragsdale aide Tyler Harber."

Feb 20 2007
09:36 am
By: R. Neal  shortURL

Pickens posted an earlier link to Betty Bean's article about the KFD in light of some recent high-profile incidents that resulted in injuries to firefighters. The article has quite a bit of background on the situation:

These incidents have frightened and infuriated many city firefighters, who say that KFD is dangerously understaffed, does not comply with national safety standards and is led by politically-connected brass who are poorly-trained and unqualified for the positions they hold.

Mayor Haslam said he was going to get politics out of the KFD and that was one of the things he tasked newly hired Chief Carlos Perez to do. Ironically, Perez was shown the door as a result of internal politics. And some firefighters think politics are still at play:

"You can link all of this together to politics," a firefighter said. "That’s the sad part. (Mayor Bill) Haslam has actually been able to dumb down the fire department, putting in a chief with the fewest qualifications; allowing others with no qualifications to remain in place and going backwards in manpower."

The city’s response, issued through Margie Nichols, gave short shrift to the charge of not complying with NFPA standards and not having a qualified safety officer on fire scenes.

"We’re not required to comply with NFPA standards; we’re required to comply with Tennessee state law. We do have a state certified safety officer."

The article has more on the "state certified" safety officer and efforts in the state legislature to make compliance with NFPA standards state law.

Since the article was published, two more firefighters were injured while rescuing a victim from a house fire. As KFD firefighters and others suggest in the article, maybe it's time for the city to consider higher standards than just the minimum required by law.

Feb 20 2007
12:14 am

and Sandra. No word on how Brian Hornback the human feels.

And just who is this "team" he keeps talking about?

Feb 20 2007
12:02 am

Springtime is just around the corner. Has anyone ever used that "mulch" made from recycled tires? I've seen some that looks pretty good. One company had a booth at the Home Show. In some areas of my yard it would be nice to have "mulch" which lasts 5+ years. I've read websites which claim you can till the stuff into the ground at the end of 5-10 years. If you've used it, can you recommend a local supplier? Thanks.


Did anyone else notice that we've fine-tuned our Iraq strategy once again? It appears we're sending 20,000 troops to be cops in Baghdad, and once the streets there are safe it's Mission Accomplished. Again.

Our Fearless Leader King George:

"And that new strategy has said that we're going to help this young Iraqi government be able to sustain itself and defend itself by enforcing security in the capital city."

From his Court Jester:

"They discussed progress in implementing the Baghdad security plan and positive indicators that the plan is coming together and beginning to have an impact in Baghdad."

[..]take a look at what's gone on in Baghdad, and take a look at the fact that you've got a security plan that's operating in districts, including Shia districts, where, at least according to reports, members of the Mahdi militia put down their arms, and in some cases are saying, okay, let's let the Baghdad security plan succeed. That is the significant factor."

So we've gone to saving America from Saddam's Weapons of Mass Destruction, to punishing Saddam for his involvement in 9/11, to protecting the Iraqi people from Saddam and establishing Democracy, to policing the streets of Baghdad. And how many people have died for this? And how much is it costing?

Saddam is dead. His "WMD" are "neutralized". Mission accomplished. Time to bring our troops home and let the Iraqi police police Baghdad.

Feb 19 2007
07:03 pm
By: rocketsquirrel  shortURL

At the risk of mixing politics with religion, and since Knoxviews bills itself as a "progressive" community, I was interested if anyone knew of any churches in the greater Knoxville area, that are more liberal/progressive in nature. We have some friends who have moved here from up north who are strong Christians who also happen to be liberal Democrats (more Jimmy Carter Southern Baptist than SBC).

They are starting to think there are only right-wing Christian churches in Knoxville.

Please prove me wrong.

Feb 19 2007
04:41 pm

I was going to post a President's Day Salute to our fearless leader, but I'm taking the day off so here's a tribute from a couple of years ago.

After the jump...


Feb 19 2007
04:28 pm

I suppose the rest of the world figures that since the Bush Presidency is in ruins, it is safe to start dishing the dirt:

Ariel Sharon

Feb 19 2007
04:13 pm

In a strange irony the end of the world now has better odds than you winning the PowerBall Lottery this Wednesday. An asteroid may come uncomfortably close to Earth in 2036.

Astronomers are monitoring an asteroid named Apophis, which has a 1 in 45,000 chance of striking Earth on April 13, 2036.

It will only be the end of the world for a City or small region but it is interesting that this is a fraction of the odds of winning this weeks PowerBall which has odds of 1 in 146,107,962.

Rest easy, the United Nations is on the case.

Feb 19 2007
07:51 am
By: clarkstooksbury  shortURL

Since he has been so consistently right about the Iraq war, I'm starting a draft (Glenn) Reynolds for Congress movement.

Feb 18 2007
07:26 pm

Stacey X apparently missed a huge opportunity for more free publicity at the expense of East Tennessee's image.

A Georgia state representative got associated with an anti-evolution memo put out by an outfit that says evolution and the Big Bang are all bunk and part of a vast Jewish conspiracy going back thousands of years.

Bonus, the outfit's website, FixedEarth.com, says the Earth does not rotate and does not revolve around the Sun:

The Earth is not rotating...nor is it going around the sun.

The universe is not one ten trillionth the size we are told.

Today’s cosmology fulfills an anti-Bible religious plan disguised as "science".

The whole scheme from Copernicanism to Big Bangism is a factless lie.

Those lies have planted the Truth-killing virus of evolutionism in every aspect of man’s "knowledge" about the Universe, the Earth, and Himself.

OK, then.



Bean talks about the firefighters who've been hurt recently and talks to people who know Scoobie.


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