An alert to Georgia public school teachers: Keep a close watch on these two legislators.
First, Jan Jones, R-Milton, Speaker Pro Tem in the House of Representatives, evidently isn't buying a report from State School Superintendent Richard Wood and the Georgia Department of Education that shows 44 percent of new teachers leave the profession within five years and that two out of three teachers surveyed said they were unlikely or very unlikely to recommend teaching as a profession.
Jones observed that teachers leaving the classroom is simply a "natural post-recession workforce adjustment."
This is the same Jan Jones who opined a few years back that when adjusted for the cost of living, Georgia teachers rank "first in the nation in teacher salary and benefits."
Not surprisingly, her assertions were proven to be false.
Not to be outdone by Jones' latest snipe, State Sen. Hunter Hill, R-Smyrna, says current public education policy is "unfair" because the wealthy pay taxes to fund public education "and get no benefit for it."
What a slap in the face to the many public school graduates who are making a significant contribution to the lives of the wealthy, as well as to the rest of us, not to mention the teachers that have influenced them.
I would suggest that Jones and Hill deign to spend a few weeks in a classroom before casting any more stones at our public schools.
I find it interesting that Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is seeking the Democratic nomination for president and is being touted as an anti-establishment candidate by his supporters.
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but he is the establishment.
Sanders has been in Congress for 25 years, first as a member of the House of Representatives beginning in 1991 and then as a U.S. senator since 2007.
How much more "establishment" can you be?
Should customers of Georgia Power Company be responsible for construction costs at the company's Plant Vogtle nuclear power units?
In 2009, the Legislature allowed the utility to add a surcharge on customers' bills which today amounts to roughly $81 annually on a typical residential customer's bill.
The facility, located near Augusta, is some three years behind schedule and roughly $3 billion over budget. And that's the ratepayers' fault?
A lot of people think the costs should be borne by shareholders instead.
Seven-year-old tycoon, Cameron Charles Yarbrough is a shareholder in the Southern Company, Georgia Power's parent company. I haven't discussed this issue with him yet. He hates to talk business while watching his favorite Minions movie.
My interest in professional football is exceeded only by my passion for 18th Century Lithuanian literature, but I found Carolina quarterback Cam Newton's behavior in his Super Bowl postgame press conference somewhere between low class and no class, what with his monosyllabic answers while sulking under his hoodie and then stalking out of the room like a petulant child minutes later.
He didn't seem to have a problem regaling us with his Superman shtick during the regular season while his team was winning.
Perhaps the Denver Broncos stole his kryptonite while kicking his fanny all over Santa Clara.
The so-called SEC primary is upon us and is our opportunity to state our preference for any of the Democratic or Republican presidential candidates.
If none of them particularly float your boat that is no excuse to not vote.
Also, spare me the "my vote won't make a difference."
Of course, it does and voting is a privilege not available to a lot of people in this world. Promise me if you decide not to vote that I don't hear from you about how the country is going to hell in a wheelbarrow.
You don't vote, you don't have the right to complain - at least not in this space.
Finally, two of the newspapers for whom I am privileged to write are celebrating significant birthdays this year. The Marietta Daily Journal turns 150 and the Donalsonville News just passed the century mark. Congratulations to both.
There will always be a need for local newspapers in our lives whether in print, on the Internet or both. Where else can you find in one place information on school board meetings, road closings, Little League results and local political doings?
Not to mention a highly-entertaining and wise-beyond-his-years columnist who thinks spellcheck is something you cash at the 7-11.
You can reach Dick Yarbrough at firstname.lastname@example.org; at P.O. Box 725373, Atlanta, GA 31139; online at dickyarbrough.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dickyarb.