The past week you would have thought we were living in two different states. North of the Gnat Line, it seemed like Siberia. Even possums and yard dogs were hugging each other trying to stay warm. South of the line, folks assumed that God was punishing North Georgia for having taken most of the political power in the last election.
I am no theologian, but I don’t believe God (a) gives a rip about politics and (b) if He did, He would order a plague of locusts to descend on the Gold Dome and eat up all the freebies that lizard-loafered lobbyists provide our intrepid public servants, thereby causing them to have to buy their own meals.
Of course, there are some things even a locust won’t do — like hang around with a bunch of politicians and lobbyists.
Right in the middle of a storm that was so fierce it looked like Boston in July, Gov. Nathan Deal was inaugurated as Georgia’s 82nd governor, succeeding such stalwarts as Humphrey Wells, Seth John Cuthbert and George E. Perdue. Before he could sit down in his new office and start doing whatever governors do, he was confronted by second-guessing news media who wanted to know why it took so long to clear the highways in Georgia. He kept his cool. That is why he is the governor and I am not.
Had I been governor, I would have issued an executive order requiring those state Department of Transportation workers who labored so diligently to clear our roads amidst jackknifed trucks and empty-headed motorists to hunt down the second-guessing news media and dump the snow on their heads. Executive order No. 2 would have been to make sure the next time we have a blizzard, the media will be required to scrape the roads themselves and the DOT workers can laugh themselves silly at a bunch of reporters and editorial writers who wouldn’t know a shovel from a shish kabob.
In Atlanta, there was one group that stayed true to their pledge that “neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” Alas, it wasn’t the Postal Service; it was the Georgia General Assembly. They weren’t about to let a little inclement weather or gloom of night keep them from their appointed rounds.
You may have heard about the power grab in the State Senate. It makes me wonder why we even bother to vote. Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle received 1.4 million votes in his re-election bid. Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers, R-Woodstock, received 46,000 and Sen. Tommie Williams, R-Lyons, received less than half that. Yet, here they are running the State Senate, having stripped Cagle of his power.
The only legislation that will come out of the Senate is what Rogers, Williams and their buddies will allow. If the last session is any indication, we may once again see a ban on micro-chipping our body parts (co-sponsored last year by Sen. Rogers) and a law allowing preachers to pack heat in the pulpit proposed by another member of the Putsch, Sen. Mitch Seabaugh (R-Sharpsburg), who must think God’s Good Shepherds can’t handle sinners without a .45.
Somebody once asked legendary humorist Will Rogers where he got his comedy material. Rogers said, “I don’t make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts.” Ol’ Will would have loved the Georgia Legislature.
On another matter, House Majority Whip Ed Lindsey, R-Atlanta, took umbrage that I reported here what he had told an Atlanta newspaper about visiting Colorado to review a recent law there rating teacher performance. He said I should have contacted him first. Good point. Lord knows I don’t want a majority whip cranky with me. That’s like picking a fight with Lash LaRue.
I will get in touch Mr. Lindsey and will also pass along the reactions of angry teachers across Georgia who, despite what many think, don’t mind getting rid of incompetent teachers. They obviously don’t like being lumped in with the bad apples. The big concern is that teachers just don’t trust our intrepid public servants to get it right. That’s a good point, too. I will report on our conversation if and when it occurs. Actually, I’m excited. I’ve never talked to a whip before.
In the meantime, let’s hope the only ice we see in Georgia for the foreseeable future will be in our sweet tea glasses. Frankly, I’d rather deal with locusts.
E-mail columnist Dick Yarbrough at firstname.lastname@example.org. For archived columns, go to www.gwinnettdailypost.com/dickyarbrough.