Columns

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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Well into my eighties, I decided long ago that free-market capitalism was the best system to provide the most and best goods and services to the most people at the best prices. And I’ve never wavered from that belief. The free market is unsurpassed in providing cars, shoes, toasters, dwellin…

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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Have you ever wondered why the Germans and Scandinavians welcome immigrants from the war-ravaged Middle East? It isn’t from the goodness of their hearts, I assure you. It’s because of Europe’s declining birth rates. Most European countries are not even reproducing at a replacement level. Thu…

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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Any time a congressional bill is introduced for anything other than tax cuts or military spending, conservatives immediately trot out the "welfare mom" scenario. But today welfare spending consumes only about nine percent of our total budget, slightly more than what we pay annually in intere…

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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The Republicans have traditionally supported our fee-for-service health care system that is dependent on the free market to mediate both quality and costs. This is a function at which it has failed miserably.

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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Ronald Reagan, the "Teflon President" for whom, incidentally, I voted twice, shrewdly deceived us on taxes, fiscal realities and other things. And we swallowed it, hook, line and sinker. But to his everlasting credit Reagan hastened the Soviet Union’s demise by increasing U.S. defense spendi…

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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Of the recent election, journalist P.J. O’Rourke observes, "America is experiencing the most severe outbreak of mass psychosis since the Salem Witch Trials of 1692." O’Rourke, a die-hard Republican, supported Hillary Clinton.

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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A nation founded on a tax revolt, Americans simply do not like to pay taxes, any taxes of any kind. We see all taxes as confiscatory and oppressive. And it seems the wealthier we become the stingier we get.

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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First George W. Bush and now Donald Trump has used the term "tax relief" to mask their tax cuts slanted toward the wealthiest Americans. Tax relief infers that we are suffering under an onerous, confiscatory tax burden.

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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From reading some of my recent columns someone might get the idea that I believe Christianity and religion in general might be on their way out. Although there is some evidence to that effect in the U.S. and Europe, worldwide, Christianity is changing and expanding in dramatic ways.

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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Donald Trump tried to scare us with his exaggerated rhetoric about the dangers from illegal immigrants, Muslim travelers to the U.S. and other strawman issues. But neither he nor Hillary ever mentioned what I believe to be the No. 1 threat to our very survival: out-of-control drug abuse of e…

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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The cultural differences between Yankees and Southerners at the time of the civil War, and to a great extent even today, can be largely attributed to differences between the Celtic people of Scottish and Irish extraction who settled the southeast and the Anglo-Saxon and German settlers of th…

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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According to "You-Know-Who," things are pretty bad right now. The country is going to Hell in a handbasket. But I think both the Prez and his followers are dead wrong. Despite persistent troubles in the Middle East and Africa, we are experiencing the longest period in modern history without …

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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The old bluegrass/country song, "I’m Crying My Heart Out Over You," contains these plaintive words: "I was blind, I could not see that you meant the world to me; and like a fool I stood and watched you go." Are we likewise blind today to the slipping away of our religious heritage and traditions?

  • By George B. Reed Jr.
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My credentials as a southerner are impeccable. My family, originally Scottish, migrated from Ireland to South Carolina and Virginia in the early 1700s. My fraternal grandmother’s family owned fifteen slaves and, as far as I can determine, every male in our family of fighting age voluntarily …

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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The once-overwhelming Christian majority in the U.S. is shrinking, and this appears to be part of a worldwide trend. The number of Americans who identify as "non- affiliated" is growing. While young adults comprise the largest unchurched group, this trend is also occurring across the entire …

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As the first leader of a fledgling United States of America, George Washington is universally recognized as "The Father of His Country", Abraham Lincoln earned the nickname of "The Great Emancipator" for ending slavery in America, Ronald Reagan was known as "The Great Communicator" for his s…

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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I think the real explanation for Trump’s election is the fact that millions of Americans feel they have been increasingly left further behind after each successive economic cycle recovery. When we plug inflation into the equation it reveals that in terms of real income the American middle an…

  • By George B. Reed Jr.
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If Obamacare is repealed we will again be the only developed country without national health care. The Republicans propose to pay for low-income families’ health insurance with their usual tax cuts and "medical savings plans," whatever those are. But tell me any place or time that has ever worked.

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The 2016 elections — the results of which will be debated, dissected and detested for years to come — are behind us and next Thursday a new commander-in-chief will be sworn in. With the election of President Donald Trump the nation as we know it could very possibly undergo extreme change.

  • By George B. Reed Jr.
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To evaluate presidents’ performances before at least a generation after they have left office is usually an exercise in futility. But an early review of Obama’s record can at least give us some idea of how future historians and political scientists might evaluate his administration.

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About 60 were in attendance when Shannon Whitfield held his first regularly scheduled business meeting last Thursday. And rather than pointing fingers or assigning blame for the serious financial challenges he assumes as the county's first new commissioner in 16 years, he did what he knows h…

  • By George B. Reed Jr.
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Since the beginning of the modern era in American politics, and I wouldn’t venture to say exactly when that was, there has been a core conviction in both major parties that if this country would just elect a true conservative (or liberal) and a Congressional majority of the same persuasion, …

  • By George B. Reed Jr.
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With the bowl games and playoffs coming up it will again become apparent (I hope!) that the Southeastern Conference plays some of the best football in the country. We will get few arguments about that around here. But there is considerable controversy over the reason(s) behind this success. …

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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Reams of paper and cartridges of ink will be expended on why Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 election. To begin with the American electorate was under no illusions about the character and abilities of either candidate, neither of whom they particularly liked. In Hillary they saw a mere continu…

  • Bo Wagner
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The snow is gently falling, while father is dragging the freshly cut tree from the forest. The lights of the cabin beckon lovingly, as mother and children wait for him on the front porch. Yes, it looks like it will be another Norman Rockwell kind of a Christmas...

  • Bo Wagner
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Most of us grew up singing a cute little song at Christmas that began like this: "You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen, but do you recall, the most famous reindeer of all..."

  • By George B. Reed Jr.
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The widely-held belief that America is divinely predestined to dominate the world, a concept known as "American Exceptionalism," is warmly reassuring and a boon to our national ego. Too bad it’s not true. Our rise to world supremacy is more attributable to natural factors, primarily geograph…

  • By George B. Reed Jr.
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Early in his presidency President Obama reaffirmed that we have an unbreakable bond with Israel, spiritual as well as political. And I completely agree. The Jewish people have given us our religion and our Savior, a debt we can never fully repay. We must always remember that Jesus was born, …

Very early on in life I had developed within me a very idealized view of the holidays. We really did not have much at all growing up; I was a child in a single-parent home. Nonetheless, my mother somehow always managed to make sure that Thanksgiving and Christmas were special times.

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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After a flat denial of global warming during the campaign in line with standard conservative doctrine, President Elect Trump has moderated his stance. It will be interesting to see exactly what that entails.

  • By George B Reed Jr.
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Here is an inconsistency for which I think there’s a reasonable explanation. There are many Americans today who will cut their own economic throats and vote against their own interests. The very poor, the very rich and the upper middle class rarely make this mistake. But a majority of white …

  • Bo Wagner
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I have often said that no one will ever convince me God does not exist, mainly because I have had so many unmistakable interactions with him. I have hungrily sought after his presence, and have not been disappointed.

  • Bo Wagner
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In retrospect, the Labrador puppy may not have been the wisest choice. Goldfish? Goldfish do not chew vital things to shreds. Nor to my knowledge do parakeets, gerbils, hamsters, or even tarantulas, though that last option is one I rank somewhere just below a deranged clown on my favorite th…

  • David Carroll
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A few years ago, I wrote my first book, "Chattanooga Radio and Television." More accurately, I put together a few hundred photos, then added some text and captions. Having no experience in getting a book published, I thought that once it came out, I would sit back and watch it fly off the sh…

  • By George B. Reed Jr.
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Here it is the day after the election and my candidate lost. I should be sad, maybe even frightened. But I’m more numbed from shock and lack of sleep than anything else. The election results were totally unexpected and made no sense whatsoever. Donald Trump has the least political experience…

  • By George B. Reed Jr.
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Our biggest problem after the election won’t be breaking in the new prez, but finding something to occupy all the newscasters, columnists and wannabe pundits as they go about selling cars, insurance and ED remedies. Donald Trump has been the biggest boon to the media since the Andrew Jackson…

  • George B. Reed Jr.
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Not since George W. Bush pushed for privatizing part of Social Security has there been serious discussion on the system’s general health and long-term viability. But this remains a legitimate concern that will not go away by our ignoring it.

  • Bo Wagner
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It had been a very long week. We had faced the funeral of a friend, many trips to the hospital to visit members who are sick and hurting, health scares with some of our precious youth and stress aplenty at every turn. We needed something to relieve the pressure.

  • Joe Phillips
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Gone! I loaded my pockets including a small flashlight and took off to see what was near the hotel. After dinner near “Radio City” I scanned the check and patted a rear pocket to find my wallet missing.

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