October 23, 2013

Charles Oliver: Making government work look easy

• I’m not sure how any of America’s top elected officials spent their weekend. But Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott put in a 14-hour shift battling wildfires. Abbott has been a volunteer firefighter for 13 years and when his brigade was called up to help battle fires that have already consumed more than 100,000 acres in New South Wales, he suited up like all the other members. The public found out only later, after some snapshots of the firefighters were posted online and people recognized Abbott. Brigade Capt. Trent Dowling bristled at suggestions that Abbot’s firefighting was a publicity stunt, noting that the work was difficult and dangerous. “Anyone who bags him for pulling on the uniform and thinks it is a picture opportunity, I would suggest they do the course and join the brigade and come and see what we do,” he said. When not battling fires and running the national government, Abbott is also a volunteer surf lifesaver.

• Greenville County, S.C., Schools officials suspended Rhett Parham, a special needs middle school student, for taking a drawing of a bomb to school.

• Officials at the Stateville Correctional Center in Illinois were supposed to transfer Walter Redawn Dixon to a federal prison to serve a 16-year sentence for drug conspiracy. Instead, they released him. Dixon warned a guard they were making a mistake. But he said the guard just told him to shut up and forced him to spend his final hours in the prison in “the hole.” “He was damn rude to me,” Dixon said of the guard.

• German author Ilija Trojanov claims he was barred from entering the United States for an academic conference. Trojanov says he was given no reason but he believes it is because he has spoken out against National Security Agency spying.

• Officials at Arizona’s Entz Elementary School asked police officer Scott Urkov not to wear his uniform and firearm if he comes to school again. Urkov got a call from the school after he dropped his daughter off one day. The principal said that other parents were upset when they saw an armed officer at the school.

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  • Tax holiday weekend is perfect time to shop

    August means children across the state are headed back to school, and for parents that means it’s time to buy new shoes and clothes for children who have outgrown their old ones. It means it’s time to buy new school supplies, and it may even mean it’s time to get a child a new computer to do their school work.

    July 30, 2014

  • "We’ve had a great ride"

    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