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Born May 18, 1953; got saved at Truett Memorial BC in Hayesville, NC 1959. On rigged ballot which I did not rig got Most Intellectual class of 71, Gaffney High School. Furman Grad, Sociology major but it was little tougher than Auburn football players had Had three dates with beautiful women the summer of 1978. Did not marry any of em. Never married anybody cause what was available was undesirable and what was desirable was unaffordable. Unlucky in love as they say and even still it is sometimes heartbreaking. Had a Pakistani Jr. Davis Cupper on the Ropes the summer of 84, City Courts, Rome Georgia I've a baby sitter, watched peoples homes while they were away on Vacation. Freelance writer, local consultant, screenwriter, and the best damn substitute teacher of Floyd County Georgia in mid 80's according to an anonymous kid passed me on main street a few years later when I went back to get a sandwich at Schroeders. Had some good moments in Collinsville as well. Ask Casey Mattox at if he will be honest about it. I try my best to make it to Bridges BBQ in Shelby NC at least four times a year.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Todd Heifner's mistake. The Ping Pong Challenge

    The Samford Class of 91 SGA President, Todd Heifner has decided in 2013 he wants to lighten his pockets by 25 dollars and a Fish Market Sampler. As afterthought in a Holiday chat yesterday he declared he wanted to get in the Fox Satellite ping pong tourney this coming year; and went further to say he could beat me.
   He wouldn't shut up, so sometime in late February he will be less pocketed in the aformentioned amount.
    As for the Family tourney with friends, Daniel Green and Andrew  and Chad Robertson are in play in Upstate S.C. and Cousin Neil in Alaska. Rob Skelton has been notified via Facebook. Chad has yet to place. Daniel Green may become a factor, Andrew is much better than he was last year and was able to take a game off The Master,his Uncle Stevie, but so far games are 4-1, Stephen.
     Will be updated as the multi-sited tourney evolves over the year.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

A Christmas Memory

     This one won't rank with John Grisham or Ron Singleton and its cloudy. But the ones between 5 and 10 are the ones than seem to universally stand out.

   For me it was in Hayesville, North Carolina. Don't remember if Aunt Jean and Uncle came up from Collinsville but they did come up one year and had a train set for me.---my Sister, I visit their house and they are good to take me in these last several years just made a Honey boo boo announcement. You could put a little pill in the smokestack and you got the smokin engine effect. Had a styrofoam tunnel.

    But got my first bicycle in Hayesville. It was a Sunday. Couldn't ride till after Church. So I hit the door soon as the Amen on the Benediction was said and rode up the sidewalk toward Dr. Padgett's house before Lunch.

   Vivid memory....Fast forward sixty years later,or almost in my 60th year now. My youngest nephew is 13 now. Waitin on him to come out of John Shelp's house and we're walkin up to see Ben and Lydia.

    I think Uncle Jack Helton got some firecrackers once up on Walden's Creek in 1912

Monday, December 17, 2012

Pressler's Baptist World holding America Hostage Fiscally

   In the Fall 2012  of Furman Alum mag is gutsy story on  Furman twenty years after break with S.C. Baptists.
    Lot of Furman intrigue unexplored in that story including Bush 41 Ethics Nominee Paul Pressler's rage at Furman early 60's religion proff Robert Crapps and Jack Flanders higher critical look at the Old Testament People of the Covenant. Pressler went to Baylor in 66 and demanded the intro Bible courses there not use the Furman text; Flanders having matriculated there about 61 which woulda been Marshall Frady's sophomore to Junior year at Furman.

   Long story short, Pressler is at the heart of the Tea Party origins of right wing America now holding America Hostage. Check out Morton Blackwell's hundred signatures.

    Look at Joe Crespino's Version in STrom Thurmond's America how Charles E. Daniel introduced Roger Milliken to Strom Thurmond. Read the book.
    A Furman poli sci proff told me 20 years ago Milliken tried to bring Pressler's good friend Gary North on the faculty in 73. Didn't happen and thank God it didn't.

    Of course there are many wrangles to this story; but bottom line for me is the quote Cecil Sherman shared from UNC Chancellor Bill Friday; who said.....Friday told Sherman the biggest event in the 80's in N.C. was the fundamentalist takeover of the SEBTS by Jesse Helms and Pressler's political fundamentalists. Joe Ferguson's book the Red White and Blue Bible; rather that chapter in his political bio Hard Right endorses that opinion.

      So to some extent Furman was part of its own undoing, even though Daniel's niece stood tall as chair of the trustees in 92. The Son of Nixon's Barber told me as much.

     Here is where the story is now as Furman's poli sci and History Departments caucus with Senator Lindsay Graham for a way forward.

   Tell Trey Gowdy I'm ready to talk when he is.

   And of Course God Bless Furman and God Bless The United States of America and Steven Spielberg and his Lincoln and Representative Yeaman from Kentucky

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Furman 20 years after Break with S.C. Baptists

   Remarkable piece in the current Furman Alumni Magazine on Furman 20 years after its historic transition. Historian AV Huff names the break in 90-92 as one of the three most momentous events in the schools 150 year history.
      In the larger context of Joe Crespino's recent bio of Strom Thurmond, how the regions Textile culture and race politics of the Dixiecrats transformed into the Sunbelt and became a template for Republican politics of the last quarter of the 20th Century morphing into the Tea Party standoff we have in the US House now; well Furman's Baptist break is a big piece of the puzzle indeed.

     From Charles Daniel's introduction of Roger Milliken to Strom Thurmond in the early 60's, to the playground S.C. became for Lee Atwater politics, Furman's Baptist history is nuanced indeed.

  Furman Chapel is named for Daniel; and Furman Religion proffs Robert Crapps and Jack Flanders became the Bane of Paul Pressler with their Higher critical look at the Old Testament People of the Covenant.

   Pressler became a nominee of Bush 41 for Ethics Czar and was key strategist with Harry Dent's pastor Ed young for Atwater, then Rove strategies.

    So lot goin on at Furman for sure, more than just Adam and Eve and whether the first eleven chapters of Genesis were Science or Faith Instruction.

   Then you place Chick Fil A's Dan Cathy in my religion class with Crapps in 71 and bring Dent's daughter  Dolly to campus the next year and it's Katie Bar the Door; or the stuff of grand fiction if you weave with biblical parable into our Country's narrative.

    I'm not makin this stuff up.

    It's a shame Marshall Frady is not still with us to go on panel this Spring at Furman for "the larger implications" as it were

Monday, December 03, 2012

First Bama Sunday of Advent 2012

  As I've said many times before here on this blog I got voted off the property of the Collinsville Baptist Church May 28, 2012. The 5 or six women who got the deacons to do their dirty work have yet to come forward and repent of their churchin; while I'm outside the sanctuary where my Momma was baptized. No one said anything to my appeal to attend the 175th anniversary back in August and I'm left singing the First Noel to myself at my home in the vicinity.
    Some of the Jezebels I'm sure think it's an answer to prayer.

    So I found myself at Jack's Sunday afternoon. Had great conversations with some passersthrough from Knoxville; and then overheard a conversation on Jesus and Moses from some fellows in the booth behind me. As I have been enthralled by Paul Harvey's Moses, Jesus and the Evangelical Trickster in the South as of late, I eavesdropped in earnest.
    Turns out these two wiry 40 somethings, and a plump third fellow were rehabbed meth users. Apparently one of had done some time. They were loosely affiliated with and left me with three CD's; One Titled The Great White Throne.
    They were from Mississippi. So I brought up Laurel and Sam Bowers and Mississippi Burning and Marcus Dupree. One of em said his brother was Sam Bowers cellmate if I understood him correctly.
   I told one of em the short version of Billy Sunday Birt of Winder Ga; but after all this theology they had to get back on the road to Mississippi. They told they lived not far from Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love, the Mississippi version made famous by Goodman Schwerner and Cheney and the aforementioned Marcus Dupree of ESPN 30/30 and the book by Willie whathis name, Marshall Frady's friend.

     Bowers was interviewed by my friend Charles Marsh for his Book God's Long Summer, and Fleming Rutledge Preached about him and the murder of Vernor Dahlmer in her sermon God Damned Christians.
   I told a Baptist preacher friend of mine formerly married to a Miss Delaware. He's a fan of Will Campbell as well. Will in a blog here a few weeks ago.

   So first Sunday of Advent turned out all right here in Northeast Alabama. My letter got published in the county paper and proof of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ was there once again in a booth behind me.
  I forgot to say just a few minutes before all this went down, the fellow from Arkansas and his family who had been to a good country church that morning had left the building.

Jesus and the Bama GOP

  The Following Letter was published in full in the Dec 1 and 2 weekend edition of the Ft. Payne Times Journal. With the help of Billy Graham and a lying bama GOP, Republicans swept the county with 80 percent of the vote going for Romney. It also elected religious right school supe and District Judge.
     Judge David Rains the incumbent who went down to defeat was supported by several Collinsvillians in an open greet at the Collinsville Library October 9 including among other hosts:

Terah and Jeff Patton
Donnie Myers and his wife
Jackie and Joanne Myers
Clyde Edward Killian and wife
Donzella Bobo and J. R.
The Bakers
Several others

  Here is my letter:

   The Editors:

The Weekend before the election the Times Journal had some interesting letters, political columns and a front page story about the church affiliation of the coming generation. That should not be surprising for Dekalb County which has done a poor job in the churces addressing the downside of the religious right and the Tea Party.
Dan Williams God's Own Party, Giberson and Stephens The Anointed, and Norm Ornstein's It's Worse Than it Looks would be great texts for folks looking with conscience and some humiliation into the future; especially folks who understand abortion and The Ten Commandments are not the only matter on the religious political radar. The "parallel universe" the religious right holds up as definitive on matters of creationism and abortion politics is suspect. It does not pass muster at Alabama's well respected denominational schools Samford and Birmingham Southern and it should not be the plumbline for elected officials in Dekalb County.
The Diane Rehm show on religion and politics of Nov 7, easy google for should be the subject of an online careful listening session for Republicans in good social standing in Dekalb County. And She had another grand exercise in truth telling on the Nov 26 program about the fiscal cliff.
It was the Bama GOP who told the Big Lie this fall with their Not Your motif. Judge Frank Johnson would've been ashamed of Mike Hubbard and whole kitnkaboodle. The Bama GOP strategy of this last election is a copy of the Koch Brothers Strategy in Kansas; who gave Alabama an immigration law through Kris Kobach now being shamed by the likes of Condi Rice, Bush 43 Atty General Alberto Gonzalez (BTW AG's Mother in law has property on Weiss Lake), S.C. US Senator Lindsay Graham and as recently as 2006 Chic Fil A CEO Dan Cathy.
Here is what Norm Ornstein of the Conservative American Enterprise Institute came out with on the easily googled online conversation of NPR Fresh Air Nov 9:

We have criticized both parties when we believed it was warranted. Today, however, we have no choice but to acknowledge that the core of the problem lies within the Republican Party.
The GOP has become an insurgent outlier in American politics. It is ideologically extreme, scornful of compromise, unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science, and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition. When one party moves this far from the mainstream, it makes it nearly impossible for the political system to deal constructively with the country's challenge.

Looking for a little more enlightened, honest prudent politics from NE Bama's proud, sometimes self righteous politicians who wear Jesus on their Sleeve.