January 15, 2014

Charles Oliver: Upcoming charity breakfast no emergency

• Officials in Palo Alto, Calif., say they will look at changing the policy for the city’s text alert system. The Fire Department used the system to send out an alert about an upcoming charity breakfast. Several people complained, saying they thought the system was only going to be used for emergencies. Fire Department officials defended the message, saying the event included a helicopter landing at a local school and they didn’t want residents to see that and panic.

• French President Francois Hollande’s approval rating dipped to 15 percent in November, making him the least popular French president since polling began. But in recent weeks his approval rating has begun to climb, and it now stands at 26 percent. And while correlation does not mean causation, it is worth considering that his approval rating went up after some media outlets reported he’s been having an affair with actress Julie Gayet.

• Deric Lostutter uncovered and leaked video that was eventually used to find two teens guilty of raping a 16-year-old girl in Steubenville, Ohio. Several school officials have also been indicted for allegedly trying to cover up the rape. Law enforcement officials and prosecutors have thanked Lostutter for uncovering that evidence. No, just kidding. They’ve charged him with criminal hacking. He faces up to 10 years in prison. One of the rapists was recently freed from a juvenile detention facility after serving less than one year for his crime.

• An inspector general’s report found that Medicare, the federal program that provides health coverage for seniors, spent $172 million between 2006 and 2011 on, umm, “vacuum erection systems.” It also found that Medicare pays, on average, double what these devices would cost if purchased over the Internet.

• South Carolina Judge Michael Baxley has ruled that the state Corrections Department’s treatment of mentally ill prisoners is “systematically deficient and exposes seriously mentally ill inmates to substantial risk of serious harm.” He also called the lawsuit filed on behalf of 3,500 inmates one of the most disturbing cases he’d seen in 14 years on the bench. He found that inmates are punished excessively with solitary confinement for nonviolent behavior, that substandard care had contributed to the deaths of several inmates and that the state has known of problems for a decade and not acted to correct them.

Charles Oliver is a staff writer for The Daily Citizen.

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    For 60 years, the Green Spot has been a part of Dalton. It survived long after most other locally owned grocery stores in the area had folded to competition from big chain grocery stores and to big box super stores.

    July 29, 2014

  • Charles Oliver: Traveler from a district in Columbia?

    Jim Gray was traveling out of Orlando International Airport when a Transportation Security Administration officer tried to stop him from boarding his plane.

    July 29, 2014

  • Letter: Children are not the enemy

    We recently read somewhere that our country is at war, not with another nation but with one another.

    July 29, 2014

  • Ensuring the joy of reading

    They’re little, they’re libraries, and best of all, they’re free.

    July 28, 2014

  • Move carefully, but soon

    No one intended for it to happen. No one had any bad motives.
    But during a period of 40 years or more, quite a few people didn’t do enough planning, didn’t have enough foresight to see what all of the development in Dalton would do.

    July 27, 2014

  • Local school systems must bear costs of federal immigration failure

    No word. No warning. Little help.
    That’s what Dalton Public Schools officials received from the federal government when it dropped 30 Central American students into local classrooms last school year.

    July 26, 2014

  • Sacrifices worth honoring

    Members of the Dalton City Council were recently approached by representatives of the local chapter of the Military Order of the Purple Heart with a request to declare Dalton a Purple Heart City. Council members indicated they will approve the request.

    July 24, 2014

  • We must do better

    The numbers tell a sad tale.
    Registered voters: 36,843.
    Cards cast: 5,307.
    That means the turnout for Tuesday’s runoffs in Whitfield County was a measly 14.4 percent, according to unofficial results from the Whitfield County elections office.

    July 23, 2014

  • Letter: Control immigration

    Thousands are starting to pour into our country, and things are getting personal. Why would we end up the bad guys if we turn away children who aren’t ours? How does it make us better people to let one man steal from our children and stand by and do nothing?

    July 23, 2014

  • Helping with Book Blast betters the community

    The school test results are in, and students in Whitfield and Murray counties mostly improved from a year ago, mirroring or exceeding average scores of their peers.

    July 23, 2014