I’m puzzled as to why Barrow County leaders have so blindly followed Athens-Clarke County in the ongoing lawsuit over Bear Creek Reservoir.
After the historic 2007 drought, Jackson County officials said the yield of the reservoir should be recalculated. They pointed to part of the contract between Barrow, Jackson, Clarke and Oconee counties that clearly states the yield should be recalculated in times of drought. Jackson’s own recalculations indicated that the lake’s actual yield was less than half of the original estimate of 53 million gallons per day.
But Clarke County, followed by Barrow and Oconee, refused to have such a recalculation done. The reason, of course, is very clear: If the yield is actually less than the 53 million, Clarke wouldn’t have access to as much water and would have to pay the other three counties for using their allocations from the lake.
Jackson County eventually filed a lawsuit and on Tuesday, a motion for summary judgment in that suit.
The facts aren’t much in dispute. The yield really is less than the original estimate. And it’s clear Clarke is trying to keep the case tied up in the courts for as long as possible to avoid having to go by a real number.
The question is, why is Barrow on Clarke’s side in the dispute? Barrow county and its towns are now searching for new water sources for the future. Yet the one source they have access to, they take a stand that is clearly not in their own interest.
A bill making its way through the Georgia Legislature would allow people to carry firearms in a number of public places, including bars, churches, college campuses and even some courthouses. It would also allow schools to arm administrators.
Hmmm. Not sure how I feel about that.
On the one hand, I have a son who is a student at Georgia Tech, which has seen its share of on-campus crimes. Seems like plugging a couple of thugs who try to rob a student there might put a stop to that for a while.
On the other hand, I’d be worried if I was a minister and my congregation began packing heat. Just as a preacher got it all wound up about drinking and gambling and whoring, some guy with a hangover from Saturday night sinning might stand up and start taking potshots. Preachers who like “shucking it down to the corn” from the pulpit might find themselves shucking it down behind it instead.
Is there anything more dysfunctional than the President and Congress? I don’t know if Washington D.C. is worse than ever. Remember, there were times when Congressmen held duels and once, a member beat a colleague with a cane on the House floor.
But the level of baloney coming from both sides of the political aisle today is staggering. Democrats are blind to the economic reality of their own policies and Republicans are the most inept communicators I’ve ever seen.
Meanwhile, Rome burns.
I’m very tired of the nation’s obsession with celebrity culture. The idea of celebrity has infused just about every aspect of society, including politics. Our television shows are all about catering to the cult of celebrity. And so-called “news” websites are filled with celebrity filler material that has no news value at all.
It’s shallow and it’s dumbing down our kids and our society.
Where have all the real adults gone?
It may be a good thing that the governor replaced six members of the DeKalb County board of education. But there is a troubling trend in all of that: School boards are being taught and encouraged to never disagree.
There is a right way and wrong way to disagree on a public board. Maybe DeKalb is doing it wrong. But public boards should not be cowered into always having unanimous decisions. There are times when debate over an issue is very much in the public interest.
Mike Buffington is co-publisher of the Barrow Journal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.