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The Monroe County Reporter
Forsyth, Georgia
January 10, 2018     The Monroe County Reporter
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January 10, 2018

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January 10, 2018 Page 5A eR porter ON THE OUTSIDE LOOKING IN by Don Daniel O heart bypass surgery ave missed being read, commented about, cussed d ignored. So, here I after some rather aumatic personal eriences, specifically triple-by-pass heart surgery, which came as a surprise. Thanks a whole of lot for the many get well cards, wishes and prayers. Honestly, I have missed attending Forsyth City Counc'fl and county commis- sion meetings and comment-~ ~ ing on the many things I often see and hear being on the outside looking in. So, I'm gonna get started. First, there has been a lot of the '%" word used about the gas prices in Forsyth. Well, it is time to either put up or shut up! Yep, there has been a lot of'9" ing on The Reporter Facebook, Waffle House coffee klatch, Vent. But obviously, no one wants to do anything about the gas prices. Of course Forsyth's mayor, city manager and mem- bers of City Council are going to keep their opinions to themselves about how exorbitant the local gas prices are because they don't want to expose their opinions since the gas stations do draw a lot of"filler-uppers" to the WhopperDiddlyDoodleyMacQueenie places which increases the city's tax coffers so they can spend tax- payer money to build a skate park, splash pad, new roof on the American Legion, give the historical society money to replace depot windows, purchase nine-holes at the local golf course enough! You get the idea why they keep their opinions to themselves. And of course the Forsyth-Monroe County Chamber of Commerce, along with the Forsyth Convention and rmiters Bureau, Downtown Development Authority, Monroe County Development Authority, don't want the word to leak out that we have the highest gas prices in the area and along 1-75 north and south bound. That kind of notoriety would not be a good "selling' attrac- tor for someone perusing our county for a new business location. Some credit is due to one county commissioner, John Ambrose for publicly stating his opinion about local gas prices: 'Whey are robbing us!" None of the other com- missioners have publicly voiced their opinion. Obviously they either don't have an opinion, pay the local gas pric- es or gas up on their soirees to Macon for which they are taxpayer refunded if they are on "count f' business. Can anything be done? Well, first of all, the interstate gas stations do not depend on us local citizens for busi- ness. One station owner told me "over 95 percent of our business comes from the interstate. We don't need local business to do business" he replied in broken English. "Our beer and lottery sales to locals are primarily the only sales to locals", another station worker told me. Will it make a difference if we become unified and voice our opinion to the government entities that should give a damn about the gas prices? One of our state representatives, Susan Holmes, confirmed my suggestion that an effort be made to make the Georgia Department of Consumer Affairs continuously aware of the obvious "caballing" and unified local price fixing that is very obvious here in Forsyth. I doubt it, but it might get rid of some frustration. It helped me just to write this although nothing will change until we care, voice our opinion and be heard which sometimes takes loud and multiple voices. I will continue to voice my opinion. Join me. NOW THAT our county commission is up to 'Tall strength", with the five members occupying their respective thrones, the first meeting of 2018 held last week had some drama with the vote allowing Dollar General to proceed with building another "shopping destination" at the intersection of Highways 18 and 87. Of course, there were more not in favor of the build- ing than for the store. But the case for allowing the company to build a store was more overwhelming than the personal attempts at convincing the com- missioner to deny the re-zoning. The vote was 4 to 1 with Commissioner John Ambrose voting with the opponents. The store is in his district and I am sure he hopes they "remembeF' him when the next county com- mission election comes around. BELIEVE THIS or not, from the County Manager's report: "Several months ago, the Board reviewed a first reader of the ordinance to require business licenses in Monroe County. If the Board is still agreeable, staff will use 2018 to identify all of the businesses in the county, build a database, and notify the businesses of the new requirement to begin January 201ff'. SEEMS like the newest county throne occupier, George Emami, is being tasked with a one-person committee assignment to find out what it will take to improve internet service in Monroe County. It is not a "re-invent the wheer' assignment and the District 4 commissioner is well suited for the job having met with Rep. Susan Holmes, who is a leader in the Georgia Legislature to bring internet service to rural areas like you can find in Monroe County. IF YOU haven't fine-dined at Forsyth's newest down- town restaurant and your appetite needs to be whetted with some octopus, Minori's Italian Restaurante has calamari as an appetizer. If you want your pasta fix, you need to make reservations for dinner or you might find yourself across the street at the Grits Caf6 or Pickled Okra. HERE'S the First Question of 2018: A replica of what Monroe County building was on display at the Georgia Governor's Mansion during the mansion Christmas tour. First correct answer after twelve noon on Thursday receives a certificate for a Jonah's cookie, Dairy Queen Blizzard, Whistle Stop fried green tomato appetizer, dozen Dunkin Donuts, Forsyth Main Street t-shirt, two Lucky Caf6 egg rolls, sandwich drink and chips at The Pickled Okra Don Daniel founded the Reporter in 1972. Email him at UNFAIR AND UNBALANCED by Marilyn Langford or those of us who our country was headed down a black hole, those thoughts were con- firmed this past week. The ques- tion is, how low can we go? We saw a President, surrounded by all his administration, defend his mental stability and tell us how smart he is, even telling us he is a genius. We heard a President bragging about the size of his nuclear button. More disturb- ing, it became clear as glass last week that we have a serf-serving Congress who has chosen to put party and their personal career above the good of the country. In other words, we have a President who has demonstrated repeatedly he is unfit to serve, but the "powers that be" are unwilling to stand up for this truth. ALL MY life, I have placed all my trust in the Constitution and those elected to preserve it. Those people are called the "powers that be." I had faith that these "powers that be" would protect our Democracy and my role as a citizen was only to vote. After voting, whether my party won or not, I could go about my daily life, never entertaining the thought that our Democracy, with so many checks and balances would be threatened. As I watch every institution being destroyed and a President with little to no fear of war, I realize that we have been betrayed by the "powers that be." BY NOW there is no doubt that our election process was interfered with by Russia. There is little doubt that collusion by the Trump campaign existed. The only way we will know for certain if Trump played a direct role in this collu- sion is to allow an unobstructed investigation. The fact that Trump has tried so hard to circumvent Robert Mueller's investigation gives any reasonably minded person cause to doubt. All that is true, but now the "powers that be" have decided it is more beneficial to them to have an unfit President than to do the responsible thing for our country. MANY THINGS happened last week that leads to that conclu- sion. An all-out assault has been launched by the "powers that be" that jeopardize our Democracy. Trump's Justice Department turned over investigative notes, e-mails, and witness lists pertain- ing to the Russia investigation, to Representative Devin Nunes, the Chair of the House Intelligence Committee. You will recall last year Nunes side-stepped an ethics investigation by recusing him- self from the Russia Investigation when he colluded with Trump and was caught. Now Speaker Ryan has allowed him back in and he is large and in charge. Don't think for one moment that this information garnered by Nunes will not be couriered to Trump by Nunes immediately. THE CALL to investigate Hillary Clinton for the ump- teenth time is back. If Hillary were not a female, I would deem her the Republican %chipping boy." She shares that distinction with Obama. Whatever the allega- tion against this Administration, Hillary Clinton is said to be worse. If we had all the money that has been spent on investigat- ing the Clintons over the years, we could substantially pay down the national debt. Investigating Hillary is more important to the "powers that be" than our elec- tions being controlled by a foreign power. Just another distraction from Trump and Russia collusion. FURTHER DISTRACTION was provided by Senators Lindsey Graham and Chuck Grassley, the epitome of the "powers that be". They referred Christopher Steele, the author of the Dossier, to the Justice Department for criminal investigation in a very vague memo. If there was any hope of Christopher Steele coming to this country to testify or explain his method, that will never happen now or he faces possible arrest for yet undetermined reasons. Further, the Group that hired Christopher Steele, Fusion GPS, has lost a fight to protect their banking information which will reveal any and all of their clients. For a private investigation com- pany, this will be the death knell for them. SINCE AN out and out firing of Special Counsel James Muetler would be difficult for the "pow- ers that be" to ignore since they were very gung ho on his hiring, they have decided there are more ways to "skin a cat." They have launched a war to undermine the investigation from many direc- tions and will provide Trump with defensive strategy to counter any- thing Mueller's investigation may determine. AND WE wonder how Hitler flourished. It started with pro- paganda and lies. The first thing he did was achieve full control over the legislative and executive branches of government. Then there was systematic suppression of the political opposition. Put'm used these same tactics. He jailed and exiled the media. The only media left is his state-run televi- sion where everything is based on lies and half-truths. Pretty much like Trump's controlled FOX News. YES, WE are in a dark time. If Trump is left unchecked, we are well on our way to being an auto- cratic society, or the unthinkable, destroyed by nuclear war. We can no longer think the "powers that be" won't let that happen. We must not go quietly. We must pro- tect Mueller's investigation and in November, 2018, the American people will be the "powers that be." Marilyn Langford of High Falls writes about current events from the liberal perspective. Email her at marilynlang- R VIEW e Monroe County's congressman Austin Scott (R-Ashburn) held his last Town Hall with his constituents in Forsyth (at right) on Aug. 20, 2014, which was 1,239 days ago. Scott defeated incumbent Congressman Jim Marshall in 2010 after Marshall went several years without hosting a Town Hall meeting with his constituents in Forsyth. If you want an opportunity to let Scott know what you want him to do in Congress, call his Washington office at (202) 225-6531 and let him know. O When Brian Kemp became secretary of state on Jan. 8, 2010, Terry Scarbor- ough's survey of the Monroe-Bibb county line was on his desk. The law says it's his job to do something with it. But Kemp, an ambitious politician who announced on March 13, 2017 his intention to run for govemor, punted. He announced on Aug. 23, 2011 that he was rejecting the Scarborough survey because he can't be sure it's the original line. Unfortunately, the law gives him no such option. So on March 1 O, 2014, the Supreme Court ordered him to set the line and resolve the dispute.That was three years ago.The Reporter is devoting this space each week to counting the number of days Kemp has been on the job, and yet not done his job. If you want Kemp to do the job which he's sought three times before he gets a promotion to governor, call his office at (404) 656-2817 and let them know. SERVING YOU FORSYTH CITY COUNClL Dexter King Post 1 478-320-3160 Chris Hewett Melvin Lawrence Greg Goolsby Julius Stroud Mike Dodd P0st 2 Post 3 Post 4 Post 5 Post 6 478-960-I Ol 7 478-993-7841404-402-I 134 706-819-0797 478094-6203 BALLOT LOCATED ON PAGE 4D d 9