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Party switching: The big scam

By   /   December 15, 2010  /   Comments

Some south Georgia voters got scammed. People in one state Senate and four State House districts re-elected Democrats only to have them switch parties after election day.

It’s kind of like going furniture shopping and picking out the perfect blue sofa. Then when it’s delivered to your house, it’s bright red.

Reps. Bob Hanner from Parrot, Gerald Greene from Cuthbert, and Ellis Black, Amy Carter and Senator Tim Golden, all from Valdosta, are now Republicans. They say they think they can represent their constituents better in the majority party.

Maybe that’s true, but it seems they’re more concerned about representing themselves and boosting their personal standing with legislative leaders. The state capitol is as clique-ish as a junior high school, and these representatives want to be part of the “in” crowd. If they had a legitimate philosophical reason to switch parties, they should have done it when they qualified to run for re-election. Because they didn’t, each one of these politicians ran unopposed.

Had they been honest with voters, true Democrats may have come forward to run against them, and voters would have had a real choice. Instead, thousands of south Georgians who thought they were voting for a Democrat actually voted for a Republican.

Many of those voters may rightly feel betrayed. The people who represent them in Atlanta misled them. That’s not right. Unfortunately, it’s something we’ve come to expect from too many politicians of both parties.

Cable competition

Is welcome

The old saying goes: “You can’t fight city hall”, and some of us have had a similar feeling about our local cable TV service.

There’s a general perception that the cable frequently has problems, and you can’t talk to a local person about it. You have to fight your way through a 1-800 telephone gauntlet, and when you do get through, many viewers tell us that the response can be less than satisfactory.

When a monopoly exists, the only horse in the race might tend to get complacent because people have nowhere else to go. But with the entrance of the L2 Network in Albany, Mediacom’s cable TV monopoly will end, and we say that’s a good thing.

Competition forces companies to work harder to get and keep their customers. We say this will benefit the consumer. If customers become dissatisfied with our current cable company, they can sign up with the new one. By the same token, if they find that the new guy on the block doesn’t deliver, they can go back to the other provider.

The Water, Gas, & Light commission will also make money from the new company by collecting a fee for the use of its fiber-optic cable. So we say the more the merrier in the TV cable business. Competition is great.

Graduation test

for the birds

It has taken 10 years, but farewell and good riddance to the Georgia high school graduation test!

Former Gov. Roy Barnes first proposed replacing the exit exam with “end-of-Course” tests 10 years ago. State Board of Education members recently approved a plan which places more emphasis on end-of-course tests.

State Schools Superintendent Brad Bryant was quoted in the Atlanta Journal Constitution as saying that state leaders wanted to phase out the exam years ago, but couldn’t because of federal testing requirements. The state has now revamped its high school graduation standards and end-of-course tests will be an acceptable substitute.

It seems as if all student testing, in recent years, has been overkill. High school students have been taking not only end-of-course tests, but an exit exam, too. Now, if the plan is approved, beginning in the fall of 2011, freshmen will be the first graduating class to receive diplomas without having to pass the Georgia high school graduation test.

Testing is good and our students need to be tested on what they’ve learned, but we certainly commend state Board of Education members for taking some of the pressure off of students by allowing them to be tested on what they’ve learned in each course. We hope the plan is approved.

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  • Published: 1721 days ago on December 15, 2010
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  • Last Modified: December 19, 2010 @ 8:22 pm
  • Filed Under: Jim Wilcox

About the author

Owner / Editor / Writer

Tom Knighton is the publisher of The Albany Journal. In November, 2011, he became the first blogger to take over a newspaper anywhere in the world. In August of 2012, he made the difficult decision to take the Journal out of print circulation and become an online news agency, a first for the Albany area.

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