Monday, October 31, 2011

Tricks & Treats 2011


First some tricks. We've certainly had them the past few days concerning Sweetwater. In today's TimesDaily, our infamous local ghost hunter Robert Simone was quoted as saying he has encountered a ghost named Silverman who purchased the property in 1914:

The Simones said they have recorded voices in the house, including one that answered “Silverman” when asked for a name. They later checked the house’s land deeds and discovered someone whose last name is Silverman was deeded the property about 1914.

“So the people who loved this place, they’re still here,” Robert Simone said.

Since it's common knowledge that the Patton/Weeden families owned the property until Mrs. Jessie Weeden's passing c. 1973, we're curious as to how a person named Silverman purchased the property in 1914. Considering Simone is a former stage magician, perhaps he sees his current job/hobby as another form or entertaining the public where he may say whatever pops into his mind?

*****

Another trick comes from "Sweetwater Mansion" itself:


So, Sweetwater doesn't want street corner preachers on their property, but will send them to disrupt a local ghost tour?

*****

Now, for some treats. If you or your child hasn't read our Halloween ghost story, we invite you to do so. This is the third year that we have presented it, and at least one reader tells us it has become a tradition in their family.


*****




Shoalanda Says Boo!little animated ghost Pictures, Images and Photos

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Amanda Watkins to be Tried on Halloween...


Former Sheffield Junior High teacher Amanda Duboise Watkins is scheduled to be tried for second degree rape tomorrow--Halloween. It seems a fitting day for the long awaited trial to begin. Assuming a jury can be struck before Noon tomorrow, the defense may begin its case as early as Tuesday morning, and a verdict by Wednesday or Thursday could be expected.

News reports indicate Watkins is now residing in Franklin County where we're sure Kimberly Bynum is anxiously awaiting the verdict as well. Bynum has yet to be indicted by a Franklin County grand jury on similar charges.

Related posts:

Delmer Duboise & Amanda Duboise Watkins

Kimberly Bynum

*****

Tuscumbia Police Chief Tony Logan is calling Halloween a pedophile's dream come true. All registered sex offenders are being required to attend special training classes tomorrow night, but just in case, parents should know who's where in their trick-or-treating territory.

Many sites list convicted sex offenders, but the most informative is run by the Alabama Department of Corrections. Clicking on the PDF/Adobe symbol below an offender's info brings up a printable handout. Kudos to whomever designed the DOC site.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Loose Threads & Looser Minds


The past two days we've commented on both sides of the Jeremy Lane Green versus Brooks High School legal wranglings. We've been forwarded this comment:

I know who Sholanda (sic) Speaks is. She likes to keep things going to keep people arguing.. Every time you visit her website she receives money. Look how she went from one extreme to another with all of this.

We're not going to name the person who posted this on Facebook. We've never met the poster, but would like to encourage her/him to show us where we have contradicted ourselves. We've simply presented the facts/fallacies on both sides and invite rebuttal as usual. If anyone can show us where we have inadvertently published any false info, please do so.

As for making money each time someone views our page? We are a member of the Google Ad Network. That means we make from two to ten cents for every thousand who visit our site during a 24 hour period. We have never claimed we were in this for money; we certainly aren't and if all we cared about was money, we would be running a sex site, or perhaps a 900 number.

When individuals post false claims on any site, atheist or Christian or Jew or Muslim, they do not speak well of the groups they represent.

****

Things that will never happen again in our lifetime:

We'll never see a Coffee v. Sheffield game on Turkey Day
We'll never see a Coffee game. Period.
We'll never see a Bradshaw game.
We'll never hear the stirring strands of Dixie at any ballgame.
We'll never see a noose on Hangman's Corner in Florence at Halloween.
We'll never drive by Culpepper's to pick up a dozen flake rolls.
We'll never drive on Court Street at dusk and look in awe at the Coke sign.
We'll never pick up a copy of a locally owned daily newspaper.
We'll never read the adventures of Slats Grobnik or Wing and a Prayer Airline.

Things change. The important thing is that we make them change for the better.



Shoalanda

Friday, October 28, 2011

Green v. Brooks: Nothing but the Facts - Part II (Not Even a Moment of Silence?)


Yesterday we discussed atheist Jeremy Lane Green who protested public prayer at Brooks High School football games. We read on a local forum that today we would "tear apart" the Brooks Lions Will Pray movement. That is not our intention, but we do have a few words of constructive criticism for those involved.

1. Apparently no one either knew or checked the law before beginning the group. Superintendent William Valentine has already assented to the FFRF's request, a fact that should have been little in doubt, if at all.

2. Now the Brooks group has contacted state senator Tammy Irons in hopes of modifying the law in some manner. We doubt even Ms. Irons has the ability to sway the Supreme Court in its current incarnation. Time spent in meaningless activity is ill spent.

3. There is also talk of a huge fund-raising project in order to retain a lawyer to plead the group's case. Sorry, folks, he or she will have no more influence than Ms. Irons.

4. Many in the group don't know the names of the school board members and apparently are unaware the Lauderdale County school system has its own web site.

5. Many in the group don't seem to understand the Freedom From Religion Foundation is not connected to the ACLU.

6. The group is supposedly composed of Christians, but many of the comments by group members and others who oppose Mr. Green have been anything but Christian. Let's look at some of them...

Where does he live? If it is Lauderdale county, run him out of town!!!!! (referring to Green)

he is scum. (referring to Valentine)

the hell with them...

6. As long as the group continues along these lines, it will only serve to give Green a second 15 minutes of fame. Think about it.

*****

It should be noted that William Valentine made his decision to delete public prayers (and supposedly moments of silence) from county ball games in conjunction with the system's attorney James Irby. The decision concerning public prayer was mandated by law; however, they did not confer with school board members. Those who say they will not vote for any current members are not practicing the fairness they claim they have been denied.

Also, it seems that only county sports are involved in this decision. Youth games sponsored by various leagues are exempt from this decision. That will not stop Green or others from protesting the leagues' use of county property. This is something the Brooks group should be considering if they wish to be one step ahead of the next legal challenge. Good luck in your future endeavors to help the school in any legal way possible.



Shoalanda

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Green v. Brooks: Nothing but the Facts - Part I

Jeremy Lane Green at SOS Meeting


Our recent blog on Jeremy Lane Green caused an onslaught of e-mail, mainly critical, from both "sides" of the Football Prayer Issue, as we will term it. Today we'll focus on Mr. Green, but rest assured we will discuss Brooks Lions Will Pray tomorrow.

I. When Mr. Green has a problem with his neighbor's stereo, or dog, or whatever, does he call the sheriff's department to request a SWAT team, or does he first cordially inform his neighbor of the problem in hopes it can be resolved peacefully? We hope he does the latter, but in the case of prayer before Brooks High football games he failed to act in a logical and reasonable manner.

A friend on Facebook suggested that if Mr. Green had first contacted Lauderdale County school superintendent William Valentine about the issue, and Valentine has changed school policy, both men would have been accused of good ol' boy conduct...yet that is exactly what happened in Arab. In that town to our east, a parent contacted school authorities, sans lawyer or out of state organization, and the school system agreed to replace public prayer with a moment of silence. Victory won without any shots being fired.

II. Why did Green single out Brooks High? Since apparently all Lauderdale County schools still engage in pre-game prayer, we do have to ask why this particular school in Killen was singled out. Needless to say, if a new policy is implemented, it will cover all Lauderdale County schools.

III. Why did Green, who has no children, decide to bring up this issue at this time? We know that Green is active in several atheist organizations in the Shoals and probably interacts with others of similar beliefs on a daily basis. Was he chosen to be a sacrificial lamb, so to speak?

Don't scoff at the above question; those who own businesses or work at conservative companies would be unlikely candidates to initiate a ban on such prayer. Perhaps he volunteered without asking, since he himself knows he won't lose income from such activities.

IV. That brings us to Green's job. Our comments on Mr. Green's degrees and employment seem to have been grossly misunderstood. Obviously Green has a keen intellect and the ability to stick with a project in order to obtain an MBA. We simply mean that such degrees are abundant in the Shoals where UNA hands them out in copious quantity. Therefore, job openings for MBAs in this geographic area are not plentiful.

But has Green been honest about his employment? No. Google does not hire outside Search Engine Evaluators. They do contract for them with smaller companies, and that is with whom Mr. Green is employed. The fact that he feels the need to overstate his employment does not speak well of him. Why should that matter? If Green is to represent the atheists of the Shoals, should he not present himself as someone who embraces morality without the influence of God to do so?

V. Has Green received death threats? Apparently he has claimed he has since his story was published in the TimesDaily two days ago. Make no mistake--no Christian would make death threats against anyone, but many thugs, yobs, or whatever you prefer to call them, would do so and claim they were made in Christ's name. If Mr. Green has received death threats, he should report them to the Lauderdale County District Attorney's office.

Does discussing Jeremy Lane Green's motives and actions in a political blog exacerbate such threats, if they exist? We can hardly see that the answer would be yes. Mr. Green entered into a public debate and offered a quote on the issue to the TimesDaily. He is now considered a public figure. We wish neither Mr. Green nor anyone else harm, but we do have the right, and even duty, to question his political motives.

*****

Tomorrow we'll discuss the group The Brooks Lions Will Pray and the legal problems they'll face in attempting to continue public prayer at Brooks and other Lauderdale County schools.




Shoalanda

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Jon Wallis Sentenced/Presley a Republican


Jon Thomas Wallis, accused of drug trafficking and the attempted murder of his wife, has been sentenced to 15 years, with three to serve and 12 on probation. The charges against Tanya Marie Wallis were dropped. We hope Mrs. Wallis and her child can now put the incident behind them.

Related posts:

Jon Thomas Wallis

Stalker?

*****

On Monday we reported that Dale Presley was running for the Colbert County Commission in District 6 on the Democratic ticket. We've been informed that Ms. Presley, a Cherokee Dollar General manager, is in fact running under the Republican banner. She may make her official announcement as early as next week. Good luck, Dale!

Related post: District 6 Heats Up

*****

We attempted to present snippets from both sides in yesterday's blog on the Freedom from Religion Foundation's campaign to end public prayer at school sponsored events in Lauderdale County; apparently we did an excellent job since each side in the debate has been highly critical of the column. We have received several comments on both sides that bear repeating, so tomorrow we'll dedicate our blog to a second look at the issue--one that's bound to linger long past football season.

Related post: Jeremy Lane Green



Shoalanda

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Special Report: "The Brooks Lions Will Pray"


It seems the actions of Jeremy Lane Green have caused quite a firestorm in the eastern end of Lauderdale county. If you oppose Mr. Green's views on public Christian prayer at tax-payer funded events, you may wish to join this new Facebook group:



The Brooks Lions Will Pray


We would very much like to hear from Mr. Green concerning any attempts he may have made to change the prayer policy before bringing in an out of state organization. As always, all comments are appreciated.



Jeremy Lane Green--Right or Wrong?


Looking at Jeremy Lane Green's Facebook page, we're reminded of Sheffield's Richard Hull--someone who wears his personal beliefs on his sleeve. While we do believe in separation of church and state, we also believe Mr. Green could have caught more flies with honey than the threat of a lawsuit.

The TimesDaily article concerning the protest of prayer at Brooks School in Killen may leave out some salient details, but we have to wonder why Green didn't first contact the school or Lauderdale Superintendent William Valentine to discuss the substitution of a moment of silence for the traditional prayer.

Instead Green has filed a complaint with the Freedom from Religion Foundation, which has in turn twice contacted the school board. The board has turned the letters over to its attorney. No matter who wrote the letters, the legal proceedings are now identified with Green.

Who is Jeremy Lane Green? From his profile photo we see he proudly displays the red atheist "A" popularized by Richard Dawkins' Out Campaign. There's certainly nothing wrong with such a display, but most of us don't include an inset of John the Baptist, John Wesley, Martin Luther, or the Pope in our profile pics. We may infer that Green is an "in your face" kinda guy.

Green's Facebook profile is interesting for another reason; he may have less to lose than most area atheists who are a productive part of the Shoals business world. Green lists his education as including an MBA. The degree is quite an accomplishment, but sadly in this geographic area it may be comparable to the Vice Presidency--in other words not worth a bucket of warm spit.

Green also lists his employer as Google, where he states he works as a "Search Engine Evaluator." Not being familiar with that job title, a quick Google search soon informed us they do not personally hire these evaluators but sub-let the work to at least two other companies who, unfortunately, don't exactly pay these work at home evaluators an exorbitant salary.

We would suggest Mr. Green revise his employment data if he wishes the respect of the Shoals community. We also suggest, after reading other entries concerning Mr. Green, that he could better use his time by fighting discrimination against those who have had legal problems in the past. He would then be helping atheists, Christians, Jews, Muslims, and perhaps even Pastafarians.



Shoalanda

Monday, October 24, 2011

Colbert County District Six Heats Up


There may be four weeks before actual qualifying begins, but District Six in Colbert County is already awash with candidates. So far, three have indicated they will run as Democrats for the county commission

Charles (Charlie) Hovater is a graduate of Cherokee High School and currently works for the Sheffield Utility Department. Hovater's signs can be seen along Hwy 43 and other well traveled areas of the district.


David C. Isom ran an unsuccessful campaign four years ago, but the owner of C& I Crane in Tuscumbia is already handing out bumper stickers and magnetic car signs to his supporters.


Dale Presley is a Silver Grove, Kentucky, native who currently resides in Tuscumbia. Sources indicate Presley, a store manager in Cherokee, may make her official announcement as early as next week.

We'll bring you more on each of these candidates as the March primary draws closer. We do have to ask where are the Republicans? Surely in 2012, the staunchly Democratic county could muster just one to run for each seat?

*****

After showcasing a Bag by TJ for sale on eBay, we had several inquiries concerning the company. We have no idea if the business is still in existence, but at least one reader has indicated they are no longer in the area. Here's another eBay find: Link





Shoalanda

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Parking Woes at Lauderdale County Courthouse


With construction to continue at the Lauderdale County Courthouse for approximately another 12 months, parking is at a premium. We've had several readers mention the lack of parking spaces, but this particular e-mail seems to sum it up quite well:

Lack of adequate parking space at the Lauderdale County courthouse has always been a problem. With the ongoing construction MONTHS from completion, what little parking WAS available for county employees, law enforcement officers and people conducting business in the courthouse, is now even MORE inadequate. There are a finite number of parking spaces (metered) on the streets...hardly enough for those individuals mentioned above to use. As a result, these aforementioned individuals have been forced to park where they can find space, sometimes several blocks away.

However, some local businesses, with little-used parking lots of their own, recently made it clear that individuals using their parking lots, while working in the Lauderdale County Courthouse, or while conducting personal business in the courthouse, WILL have their vehicles towed. So much for being 'good neighbors'. Chalk 'another one' up for poor planning on part of Lauderdale County officials in not having made plans to deal with the lack of parking space during the renovation of the courthouse.

We will disagree about neighboring businesses; it's not their place to provide parking for construction or other workers, and just because there's available parking at 8:00 a.m., it doesn't always follow that those spaces won't be needed throughout the day. We'll inject here that the Florence-Lauderdale Government Building next door to the courthouse also has abysmal parking, considering the structure was originally a bank/office complex.

We will agree that the entire construction project was poorly planned by all departments. If you have regular business at the courthouse and are unable to park, we suggest you make the county commission aware of the problem, or contact Fitz Hill who is overseeing the renovations.

County Commission: 256.760.5747

Fitz Hill:
256.766.2000

*****




Shoalanda

Saturday, October 22, 2011

The Law & Unmarked Police Cars


Surprisingly, many don't seem to know the law in Alabama concerning unmarked police cars. Yes, you have to stop, but not immediately if you're in an unlit, unpopulated area. Here's what the Alabama State Trooper's office has to say:

* Slow down, turn on your emergency flashers and proceed to a safe location--that could be the shoulder of the road, a home, store or somebody's driveway.

* Make sure the person is in a police uniform and asks for your driver's license. There's no reason for officers to ask anybody, especially a female, to step out of the car unless they suspect you've been driving under the influence.

* If an unmarked car pulls you over and you want to make sure it's a law enforcement officer, call 911 or *47 and check to see if an officer is in the area. Unmarked cars are mostly used during the daytime and rarely at night.

Here's hoping the degenerate in Lauderdale County who's been posing as an officer of the law will be quickly apprehended.

*****

Recent updates on the Brandon Shane Mundy vehicular homicide case indicate that civil suits against both Mundy personally and the town of North Courtland are ongoing; however, should the family of Mundy's two victims win their suit against North Courtland, the damages will be capped at 200K. Munday continues to use the "thin blue line" logo on his Facebook page, although he is no longer employed in law enforcement.

Related posts:

Cowboy Cop

Fatal Moulton Crash



Shoalanda

Friday, October 21, 2011

Three Years & Still Holding the Block


That's right--yesterday marked three years of blogging on the Shoals political scene, as well as other assorted themes. We hope you've enjoyed it as much as we have.

A few readers have asked us about our motto of "holding the block." We consider our block the Shoals area, and as we've said before it all starts here. If we can join together to solve the Shoals' problems, other towns in Alabama can do the same. Then our community and state will no longer be dependent on Federal programs for every facet of daily life.

Here's a clip that pretty well sums up our philosophy. Thanks again and enjoy.





Shoalanda

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Let's Play "Name the Three Locations!"


Ready, Guys? Here we go...the first one to identify all three locations wins the game and proves they're as smart as Joe Roach.

Location Number One: It's in Colbert County, but that's the only clue we can give you.

Location Number Two: It's in Colbert County on TVA property. Now you say that location has already been named and right you are. Of course there are the two little problems of TVA not letting RegionalCare have the land and Keller Hospital tying up the Certificate of Need for years.

A TVT Forum poster writes:


They aren't going to build it in Colbert County. Colbert Co doesn't want that, Lauderdale Co doesn't want that, and more importantly, they aren't going to shell out $40 mil in additional costs for not building in Lauderdale Co. He's playing everybody so that when the site is announced - and they've known what the site will be for at least a year - they won't get any flak.


Location Number Three: It's in Lauderdale County and Rhea Fulmer has mentioned the location at least once. A faithful and brilliant reader writes:

I find it very hard to believe that Regional Care can alter its commitment to build in Lauderdale County or to "hand back the keys". They have been running the hospital for quite awhile, and they have implemented significant changes.

RCH has invested quite a bit of money already with the Times Daily and surely has a commitment for ongoing advertising. Do you think this fact might have influenced Mike Goens to recommend the TVA site, or possibly, even unknowingly, to play along with Roach's manipulation?

Dewey Mitchell should be committed to a Lauderdale county site due to his elected position, yet we know that some of the politicians involved are not running for re-election.

There was a TD article published on 9-7-11 by Tom Smith titled "Commission: Hospital best in Lauderdale County" (which I did print at the time so I do have a copy of it). In the article, Rhea Fulmer is identified as Lauderdale County Commissioner. She identified " a site on Lauderdale 47, just north of Cox Creek Parkway" being discussed, and it appears to be the only Lauderdale county site under consideration.

The TVA site can hardly be 10 miles from the Lauderdale site, so how much difference can there be in calling it a "regional" location also? I cannot imagine the ambulance/ emergency response situation on the bridges. And I cannot imagine the impact to our Florence economy if the hospital is relocated to another county. A drive through Sheffield is sobering.

I also cannot imagine the legal mess involved in selecting a Colbert County site, Keller's rightful opposition, the Certificate of need delay. This drama is almost absurd, and that's why I continue to wonder whether this is legitimate or simply game-playing/ manipulation. I see you have expressed the same.

Yesterday's TD photo of Roach with the words emphasized "Location, location, location...No site has been selected, no options signed, no money has changed hands." That seems a rather bizarre focus for the meeting but also quite deliberate.

So, folks, is it all smoke and mirrors? Will it be the Lauderdale location--perhaps for a lower price since the owner may now be spooked about the deal? We await your input--we'll publish any thoughts from the public.

*****

Yes!!! Yayness!!! It's that time again, starting tomorrow!

Your Tour Guide Debra Glass





Shoalanda

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Bubba's Views on Balls & Chains (Both Kinds)


You've Obviously Never Been in Prison

A Guest Commentary By

Bubba LeRoy Smuckpucker II


Since everbody has had their say about the problems with the new immigration law, I thought I needed to come on Miss Shoalanda's here and straighten some people out. Mainly one person who wrote about prisoners picking crops. Here's what they said:

I am 80 years old. I love to eat vegetables and fruits. So, I wish they would let the prisoners wear a ball and chain for four hours a day and pick the fruits and vegetables, or we won’t be able to afford the price.

Now I don't mean no disrespect to no 80 year-old lady or gentleman, but you can tell they've never been in prison. Not that I have been either you understand, but my cousin Jimbo Bob has been there a few times so I do know what I'm talking about.

Our great state of Alabama is fixing to let some prisoners pick peaches, and cotton, and all that other good stuff, but it ain't nothing new. These prisoners don't need to wear no ball and chain cause they're what you call "minimum custody." You even got two kinds of them. You got the kind that wear that prison white and work outside the prison for fifty or sixty cent an hour, but I doubt Gov. Bentley would be willing to give them up since they work at state jobs and save us a whole heap of money.

Then you got your real work release that wear those nice jeans and flannel shirts and all and they make real money, maybe even $7.00 an hour. They'd be the ones the state would send to pick all these crops the illegal immigrants runn oft and left. You don't need to be afeart of them, but you might have one escape now and then. Some of them ain't too smart.

I hope that clears it up for all the readers, but afore I sign off, I want to invite you to my daughter Rebbie Sue's wedding. Yep, she and her fiance' Wayland Elvis will be putting on the marital ball and chain this Thanksgiving. We thought that was a good day for it since we could combine the full course meal with the reception, cause goodness knows the wedding dress cost enough.


I've never been a man to brag about whut I got as far as cars and fancy furniture that don't need no coasters since it's laminated on top, but this is one time I've gotta tell the news. Yep, little Rebbie Sue will be wearing a Mossy Oak dress trimmed in Hunter's Orange. Lucky for her they come in a size 30 cause she's a real hardy gal. I'm required to say that for this honest and sincere endorsement, CamoFormal will be giving us a substantial discount on Rebbie Sue's dress, so ya'll have a good look at it and remember the company when your gals get ready to tie on the old ball and chain.

Bubba LeRoy Smuckpucker II
Dog Ear, Alabama
Foghorn Junior High Class of 1982


*****

Thanks to Bubba for another one of a kind commentary.



Shoalanda

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Colbert County Probate Judge Race Heats Up


Daniel Rosser is currently the only announced candidate for the office of Probate Judge in Colbert County, but that doesn't mean several more won't be involved in the final fray. Rosser is running as a Democrat, and will presumably run against incumbent Thomas Crosslin, assuming the current judge doesn't decide to retire.

On the Republican side, Tommy Oswalt, owner of the Trojan House Cafe' in Muscle Shoals, has stated his intention to stand as a Republican, and now Jim Bonner, former candidate for the state legislature, has also unofficially entered the fray.

Bonner's name has only just been added to the ShoalsInsider's poll on the race, but for what it may be worth, here are the current stats on the four candidates:



Related post: Daniel Rosser

*****


It's been quite some time since we've added to our Shoals eyesore list, but today we have a doozy. The former Dairy King building on Montgomery Avenue in Sheffield has stood vacant for many years, well over 20 according to M.C. who was kind enough to take this photo for us--a photo that says is all.

Who is the current owner? Could he be someone who has the funds to begin immediate restoration of this property? If so, why doesn't he care? More later...



Shoalanda

Monday, October 17, 2011

RegionalCare to "Hand Back the Keys" to ECM?


Mike Goens, Managing Editor of the Shelton family's TimesDaily, always has an interesting column--not that accurate, but interesting. You may remember that until recently Goens sang the praises of National Alabama and all that corporation would accomplish. Now we're waiting to see how the legalities of National Alabama's dissolution will work.

It seems Goens is currently theorizing that if Joe Roach can't build the new regional hospital in Colbert County, he and his superiors at RegionalCare may just return the Coffee Health Group to Lauderdale County. While we haven't read the contract with our magnifying specs on, we doubt that would be an easy thing to do, if it were doable at all.

Could it be that CEO Joe Roach simply likes to play with his adoring public? We've said before, if the hospital were to be planned for Colbert County, just how long would Keller hold up the Certificate of Need?

*****

What's a good American and what's a bad American? A friend recently sent an essay to us entitled I'm a Bad American. The essay is written by Ted Nugent (so be forewarned), but it holds as many truths as it does fallacies. No we certainly don't agree with all of the concepts contained therein, but it does make for interesting, and humorous, reading.




Shoalanda

Sunday, October 16, 2011

An Open Letter to Cliff Wright


Dear Cliff:

I read your statements in the TimesDaily concerning illegal immigration and the recent law changes in Alabama. I agree with much you have said, but I also disagree with much.

I agree that the law was not the best thought out piece of legislation ever to be produced in Montgomery. Our lawmakers need to take the blame for that--if they honestly tried to serve the people of Alabama instead of special interests, they wouldn't work under time constraints of their own making, but would labor in a bipartisan manner to serve the state's citizens.

I also know that you have a family and in all probability have your income invested in such ways that you are not inordinately taxed. For those of us who are single, not quite poor, but not quite rich, we pay approximately 25% of our income in taxes. We want our money to go to the citizens and infrastructure of this state--not a foreign government.

I'm also going to guess that you don't do much of your home's shopping. In other words, you're not frequently standing in line behind Hispanic Indians who produce a state electronic debit card to pay for two carts of groceries--all the while in the express lane either because they don't read English or don't care since breaking rules means little to them.

I daily see citizens who are suffering--white, black, and in between. It's not about being a racist. I want our citizens put first. I cannot imagine Jesus advising anyone to commit an illegal act. In fact, He said the poor would be with us always.

We don't have the funds to help everyone. Whom should we help? The Alabama child who may grow up to be a brilliant researcher or top industrialist...or the Hispanic child who may never learn even to read or write English? Again, I say whom should we put first...our citizens or those who continue to fly the colors of a foreign country while taking all the United States has to offer? It shouldn't be a hard choice.



Shoalanda

Saturday, October 15, 2011

What's a Criminal?/Tim Yeager Update


If you answered "one who commits a crime," you're correct. Subjectively, we don't see those guilty of speeding or running a stop sign as being criminals, but they are. That means that most of us have committed criminal acts at some time in our lives. Similarly, those who come to this country illegally are criminals. It shouldn't be hard to understand.

The TimesDaily is currently running articles on the effect Alabama's new immigration law is having on Franklin County. Apparently many legal merchants were dependent on illegals for much of their business. Would we have sympathy for the pawn shop owner who complained of losing half his business when local drug dealers were arrested? We think not.

*****

We've received information that the charges of sexual molestation against Iuka Middle School coach Tim Yeager are still ongoing. We should have more information concerning the status of his case in a few weeks.

Related post: Tim Yeager Faces Sex Charges

*****


Remember "Bags by T.J. of Florence?" They're quite collectible and extremely hard to find. Here's a great one on eBay: Link



Shoalanda

Friday, October 14, 2011

170 Hispanic Students Boycott Russellville City Schools


A source with Russellville City Schools has stated 108 Hispanic students were absent from high school classes on Wednesday. The educator further stated that if the parents of these children really cared for their offspring, as well as wanting to obey U.S. laws, the children would have been in attendance. "They're the ones who suffer. They're the ones who really needed to be here," said the source. A total of 170 were reported absent from the entire system.

We agree totally. Sadly, these children were used as pawns; that doesn't speak well of the parents or of their goals.

*****

The Russellville Fire Department was called to the A.W. Todd Centre yesterday to remove Hispanics from the premises. There were conflicting reports of the exact number who were asked to leave the meeting where further protests of Alabama's new immigration law were being planned, but the Fire Marshal stated the number in attendance exceeded the meeting room's capacity.

*****

What did the Hispanic boycott accomplish? Probably nothing its originators intended. Those who didn't purchase or sell goods on the day of the boycott purchased more the day before or the day after. Employees who failed to show up for work now have a black mark against them. Students who were kept home from school have missed a day of learning and are now that much further behind those who did attend.

We're going to guess that logic isn't a strong point with those who framed this protest...



Shoalanda

Thursday, October 13, 2011

ECM: What a Waste of Money/A New Home


ECM: What a Waste of Money

A Guest Commentary By

DeDe


As a past employee, I quit, did not get fired. I worked as an employee at ECM for over six years and this past year there has been a subject that has really bothered me. I also have enough sense to know that a "Letter To The Editor" would not be printed about this because of all of the money that they might lose from advertisements from RegionalCare Hospital.

Has anyone noticed all of the large half page and full page ads.that are being put in the newspaper almost on a daily basis? The hospital has ads from how good they are to the equipment they have gotten. They are even paying for big half page ads on new doctors coming here. Shouldn't these doctors be paying for these ads? Yet, they are advertised under the name of ECM.

I don't personally think people care about this "bragging" near as much as they care about results. I can't even begin to know the extent of money, thousands or maybe millions of dollars being wasted on all of these ads. People that have ever been a patient at this hospital know the type of service they receive (good or bad). Most people don't care anything at all about these one hundred percent ratings that they receive, all the patient cares about is the type of service and the results of hospital stay.

All of these ads and money could definitely be spent in a wiser way. ECM should take all of this"extra money" that they have to waste on ads and give their employees a much needed raise, more money. From RNs who are over worked and spend their time trying to save lives to getting a patient well to the people who clean rooms. I'm sure that the people sitting behind their desk make make plenty of money, but ECM nurses are the lowest paid nurses in any hospital within close to a hundred mile area. Nurses are leaving frequently to go to work at Athens, Huntsville, Decatur, Lawrenceburg, even as far away as Tupelo, just to name a few, where they can make more money.

Even counting driving time and gas money they can still come out ahead. Nurses are the people who work daily to make patients more comfortable, see to their pain, listen to the patients and patient's families problems and complaints. But, most important of all, they save lives. The secretaries have patients lives in their hands every time they read a patient's chart. One wrong letter in a name of a medicine could kill a person.

The techs who give fresh water, change beds, wipe bottoms to anything else a patient wants and last but not least are the housekeepers who keep hospital and patients rooms sanitized so the patient can get better and also so this hospital can get these high rankings. Some of these employees make less than people working at Burger King and McDonalds. Does this seem right to you? Take this wasted money and do what is right with it, give employers more money. After all, they are the ones saving lives, not Times Daily.

ECM WHAT A BIG WASTE OF MONEY !!!

*****

I'm Moving into a New Home

By Bailey Quarters


I've been living in unbearable conditions, so I'm moving into a much nicer home. I haven't bought the house, but it's vacant, so there's lots of room for me, my mother, her boyfriend, our six cats and a pet pig. I think it's a wise choice, particularly since I won't have to pay taxes on the property.

Technically what I'm doing is called squatting, but all I want is a better life for myself and family. Squatting is legal in some countries and I predict PresBo will soon make it legal here. In the mean time, we're having a housewarming and y'all are invited. There's oodles of room to park your choppers in the foyer, and if it should get a little nippy, the power isn't turned on yet, but there's plenty of chairs and books to burn in the fireplace.

Isn't the USA a great country?

*****

To answer Bailey's question, it used to be...



Shoalanda

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Our Most Wanted List: How Many Hispanics?


It's long been reported that all states attempt to make their prison population match their ethnic/cultural makeup. If the population of Alabama is 25% African American, then no more than one out of four prison inmates should be black. That does not always work, but parole statistics do tend to back this theory up.

Now comes the TimesDaily with a report on the Shoals area's most wanted nine criminals. How does this list break down? Of the Naughty Nine, only one is a woman. Somewhat surprising, but women do generally commit less violent crimes than men--even their acts of murder are often technically non-violent, i.e. poisoning. The lone woman also makes up 50% of the most wanted African Americans. How do the remaining seven break down? Three most wanted individuals are white males, a rather surprising fact since Caucasians make up such a large percentage of the population. Who are the remaining four?

Yes, four out of nine of the Shoals area's most wanted are Hispanic Indian males. One is wanted for murder; others are wanted for various sexual crimes against minors. No, gentle readers, flakes from the upper crust of Mexico or Guatemala or any country south of the border are not relocating here in droves.

Are all Hispanics who move here the scumma de terra? No, but sadly many are, and their home countries don't want them any more than we should.

*****

There have been reports of Hispanic owned businesses closing today in Franklin County in protest of the new immigration law. The earth still turns on its axis, and we suggest no legal citizens patronize these establishments. Protests can work both ways.

*****

The Connection has reported that Lauderdale County has now hired a replacement for County Administrator Jenoice Bevis: Link



Shoalanda

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

TimesDaily High Jinks (Feral Pig? You Don't Say)


We're using the words "high jinks" loosely, but they seem as good as any to describe current goings on at our local rag. If you missed Scott Morris' Sunday column, he (via an alter ego) says we're all going to hell. Of course that's possible, but if you're wondering why Mr. Morris would bring our eternal fate up at all, it seems he may just be opposed to Alabama's new immigration law.

Morris points out the sales taxes paid by illegal immigrants, as well as the income and social security tax that many pay in via a fraudulent number--meaning they reap no actual benefit from it, but our government does. What Morris doesn't point out is the fact these taxes are dwarfed by the amount our government is forced to expend on said immigrants through health and other services. Also, please notice the use of the words "illegal" and "fraudulent" in the above sentences.

The editor from Decatur also fails to point out that these illegal immigrants do nothing to improve Alabama's image, an image still tarnished by a governor's family posing barefooted for a national magazine. We can't have it both ways, Mr. Morris. Either we move ahead or we fall behind, leaving the dregs of our great new society here in Alabama while the creme de la creme moves to greener pastures in other states.

*****

We recently mentioned the loss of a decade of TimesDaily archives brought about by their change in Internet servers. If you click on a Google link now, you're apt to see the following screen:


It seems pretty straight forward except for...the Feral Pig Story. We're not sure if some disgruntled TD employee thought this was a great joke to play on the newspaper and its readers or if the TD staff simply don't know how to use the new software. Hey, any underachiever can import the wrong line of text; it takes a colossal screw-up to leave it there.

*****

Moving on to RegionalCare, their Sunday ad advises us that the Shoals working together can "reclaim our rightful place as a regional medical center." Yes, we can, or we could, if we ever had been...



Shoalanda

Monday, October 10, 2011

Who Will Replace Retiring Jenoice Bevis?


Long-time Lauderdale County administrator Jenoice Bevis will be retiring at the end of December, if not earlier. The search for a successor began some weeks ago when the county commission posted the future job opening. By the end of the application deadline, six individuals had applied for the plum job. Among those reported to have applied were Bill Lovelace of the Juvenile Court and the secretary to Judge Dewey Mitchell; the names or positions of the other four applicants have not been reported to us.

After reviewing the six applications, the commission decided that none of those who expressed interest in the job was qualified. Just what are the qualifications for the position of county administrator? The new county administrator must possess a degree in either business or accounting and have experience in fund accounting. We understand that even Mrs. Bevis does not meet these criteria.

The job has not been reposted, and Mrs. Bevis will be leaving in ten weeks--at the most.

*****

Would David Bronner ever leave the RSA? A reader has mentioned the possibility to us. Certainly now that the National Alabama debacle is more or less in the past, Bronner is riding high again. Now would be the perfect time to head to the proverbial greener pastures where his job would not be dependent on the whims of a state legislature. Keep your eyes and ears open.



Shoalanda

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Who is Laura Fitterman & Why Are People Saying These Things about Her?


While researching our column for Monday, we came upon a blog entitled Stop Laura Fitterman. Obviously we wanted to know exactly what we're supposed to stop Ms. Fitterman from doing--apparently it's adopting stray animals, breeding them, and then selling the progeny for profit.

While we don't agree with everything the blog has to say (after all, where had kittens rather sleep than a pile of laundry on the floor?), we did find that the author made some interesting points. Since Ms. Fitterman has been banned from professional organizations, as well as being charged with cruelly to animals, we would suggest any animal purchased from her might not be in the best of health and also such purchases might encourage more of her collecting mania.


*****

No Human is Illegal?

While humans are not illegal, certain immigrants are. Let's look at some recent statements from such illegal immigrants, replacing a few words in each:

1. I can't stop stealing. My daughters need shoes and other things.

2. Every time I go out
to rob, I pray to God, 'Help us come back.'

3. "I don't want to tell her it's because we're
thieves," she said through a translator.

Yes, these illegal immigrants steal funds that could go to needy citizens or help the United States balance its budget. It's interesting that most pictures of protesters depict college age students who in all probability still live at home or at least rely on their parents for support. We doubt they'll feel the same once they begin to pay taxes.



Shoalanda

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Kenneth Dyar Wood Escapes Earthly Judgment


The wheels of justice frequently turn slowly; therefore we are never surprised at the length of time between an arrest and indictment, or between an indictment and the actual plea or trial. We've had frequent questions concerning Danville's accused child rapist Kenneth Dyar Wood and former Brooks High School coach Tim Yeager, neither of whom we've heard from since the initial reports of their alleged crimes.

A reader has sent us a link to an obituary for Wood. It seems that after being arrested in May 2009 on at least one count of rape of a child under the age of 12, Kenneth Dyar Wood reported to a higher judge than the one he would have faced in Lawrence County. The Pentecostal preacher passed away on May 28, 2010, and was buried June 2nd at Morris Chapel Cemetery. The 71 year-old Wood had possibly faced more charges as other victims were reported to be coming forward.

If Wood was innocent, it's sad that he did not have a chance to redeem his reputation. If guilty, at least his victims and their families know they are now safe from the pedophile who robbed them of so much.

Related post: Kenneth Dyar Wood

*****

Grow Alabama started out as a mere fruit and vegetable market in Birmingham. Now it's arranging for the unemployed and work release inmates to be matched up with farmers who need field hands for harvesting crops. Kudos to this program that's proving we in Alabama don't need to do anything illegal to make a living through farming.




Shoalanda

Friday, October 7, 2011

Goodbye, Chief Rick Singleton? Hello, Sheriff Rick Singleton?


A trusted source has reported that Florence Police Chief Rick Singleton may soon announce his candidacy for Lauderdale County Sheriff, a post now held by Ronnie (Pass the Donuts, You Pretty Young Thing You) Willis. We would consider Chief Singleton to be the proverbial shoe-in should such an election take place, but would it be a step up for him?

Online sources list the median salary for both Alabama police chiefs and sheriffs as $88,143.00; however, the Florence police chief currently earns $87,919.00 while Lauderdale's sheriff earns only $85,402.00. Is Chief Singleton eligible for a city retirement or is he simply tired of watching the county's law enforcement being mismanaged?

If the Florence chief should leave, who would succeed him? It wouldn't be unusual for the city council to interview outside the area for a new chief. Looking inward at the current department, Deputy Chief Tim Shaddix seems a logical choice. Whoever it might be would have tremendous shoes to fill.

*****

A reader comments on immigration law protests:

They are protesting the State of Alabama's enforcement of United States Criminal Code related to immigration to this country. Period, end of story, nothing more-nothing less. Those advocating for the "rights" of illegal immigrants prefer that the State of Alabama not enforce the law, or attempt to enforce the law. The State of Alabama--anemic from a long-running economic downturn, a failed "economic stimulus" plan from the "Agent of Change and Hope" (yes we can!...but no we haven't), prefers to enforce the law in hopes of combating a huge economic drain on the State. Interestingly enough, the illegals are largely silent on the matter, and are simply moving to states where illegal immigration laws are not enforced. So, why are they not protesting and advocating for their own "rights"? Because they know the law, know they are breaking the law, and want to hide somewhere safe while the so-called "enlightened" liberals protest and scream "racism"....What a country....gota love it!



Shoalanda

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Will Quinton Hanson Run for Mayor?


We've heard the solid Republican will be on the 2012 ballot for something, just not what. Now that Bobby Irons has officially left the political arena, could we assume Hanson will stand for mayor of Florence? We're looking forward to the start of qualifying season and predict a plethora of surprises.

Related post: A Man With a Plan

*****

Speaking of mayors, Cherokee's Chuck Lansdell has missed the last three council meetings. Maybe the citizens could start a fire at town hall to get him there?

*****

A fan of the local band Muddbone tells us they have left the Shoals for greener pastures. You can still follow them in their new Florida home on Facebook:


*****

The Shoals Democratic Club
will meet
Monday, October 17, 2011
6:00 (meal) & 6:30 (meeting)
Steelworkers' Union Hall, Muscle Shoals
Intersection of Avalon Avenue and Wilson Dam Road
GUEST SPEAKER: Rep. Marcel Black
The public is always invited to attend.



Shoalanda

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Daniel Rosser Escapes Just in Time


Charles Daniel Rosser Jr. is a very busy man these days. A graduate of Deshler High School, UNA, and the Birmingham School of Law, Daniel is currently a Democratic candidate for Colbert County Probate Judge.

However, the name Daniel Rosser may be more familiar to the Shoals area as the current attorney for the small Colbert County town of Cherokee. Since succeeding Rebecca Narmore, Rosser has not had smooth sailing in the position of town attorney, but neither would have any other lawyer. Now, Rosser has wisely submitted his resignation.

Rosser has pledged he will remain with the troubled town until a replacement can be found. Considering Cherokee's reputation, that may be some time. Officially, Rosser is the first candidate of either party to announce. Current probate judge Thomas Crosslin has held that position for a number of years and is rumored to be considering retirement. He also has collected nine votes on the Courthouse Forum as the worst judge in Alabama--extremely subjective voting, but something to consider.

We wish Mr. Rosser the best of luck in his campaign, as well as a speedy departure from Cherokee. We doubt that if elected Rosser will continue to list that post on his CV.

*****

Congratulation to Alfie Crosslin, the Dragon Dog, on being appointed the official mascot of the Renaissance Faire. We can't think of anyone who deserves it more.

Related post: Saluting Alfie Crosslin



Shoalanda

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

"coach422002" - Bully & Blackmailer


Are all alleged rape victims telling the truth? No. Are all teenage girls who charge their PhysEd teacher with fondling them speaking the truth? We'll venture a guess no. How do we know who's truthful? Each of us has to go with our gut instinct based on known facts.

As we wrote yesterday, the teaching license of Brian Keith McGuire now lies in the hands of the Alabama Superintendent of Education after a special judge ruled that the State had not proved McGuire morally unfit to teach. Here are the reactions of three women who claim to have been sexually abused by this former coach.

Former Clements Student One:
"It appears that once again money has bought freedom. The State of Alabama has given Coach McGuire the pass he needs to continue harming innocent children. Sad."

Former Clements Student Two:
"I can only hope the State Superintendent will see that Coach McGuire is still capable of harming young ladies. He admitted he had a problem and that should echo in the heart of the Superintendent as he makes the final decision."

Alleged Rape Victim:
" I am disappointed in the Alabama Law Judge's recommendation that Keith McGuire be allowed to continue to teach. I do however find comfort in the fact that parents and our Alabama Educational System will at least be aware of what Mr. McGuire is capable of. With that being said I have taken a stand for what is right and in the end justice always prevails."

And what might our personal statement be concerning all this? It's four simple words: We don't like bullies. Or perhaps we should delete the word "bullies" and insert the word "blackmailers." The legal definition of blackmail usually refers to demands involving monetary gain, but according to common law "Neither extortion nor blackmail
require a threat of a criminal act, such as violence, merely a threat used to elicit actions, money, or property from the object of the extortion."

Below are two e-mails we received over a year ago from the account of "coach422002." The address line states that the account belongs to "Brian McGuire." The e-mails themselves state that they come from a cousin "Wade." Was Cousin Wade using Keith McGuire's e-mail account? Possibly. If he wasn't, we're sure Wade will now have some words for his cousin.

After receiving the e-mails, we sent copies to the State Superintendent's office. For the record, we have never met Brian Keith McGuire or any of his alleged victims, but we sincerely hope "coach422002" will be held accountable for his actions.






Click Either Image to Enlarge



Shoalanda

Monday, October 3, 2011

Brian Keith McGuire's Fight for Teaching License Heads to State Superintendent


For those who came in late, Brian Keith McGuire is a teacher and former coach who grew up in the small Lauderdale County town of Lexington. After working several years as a barber, McGuire returned to school and graduated from Athens State University with a degree in education; he then taught at Clements High School in western Limestone County.

After accusations that he initiated unwanted sexual contact with two female students, McGuire resigned from Clements in 2002 and taught at three other Alabama schools before being indicted on a rape charge in 2008. At that time two other Clements students came forward with stories of improper conduct by McGuire, and the Alabama Board of Education sought the revocation of McGuire's teaching license. An initial hearing was continued until after McGuire's 2009 trial, at which he was found not guilty of assaulting a teenage babysitter.

It was not until December 14th and 15th of 2010 that the revocation hearing was concluded, with authorities promising a verdict within 30 days. Due to requests for various rebuttals and other delays, the verdict was not announced until last Friday. On September 30th, nine and one-half months after the hearing, a judge pronounced that the State Board of Education had not sufficiently proved McGuire was morally unfit to teach in the state.

Unlike a trial, this hearing does not produce an actual verdict, but only a recommendation to the state superintendent. Now, Interim Superintendent Larry E. Craven will decide the fate of McGuire's licensure...or he could postpone the decision until his replacement is announced.

Those who claim to have been the victims of sexual abuse by McGuire have made their unhappiness with the decision known. Two former Clements students and the alleged rape victim are among those who have offered their opinions on the special judge's decision. We'll bring them to you tomorrow.

*****

Sources with the Muscle Shoals Police Department have stated that former UNA student Corey Langley Griffin, currently accused of rape and awaiting indictment, has two similar previous charges for violence against women. Both a former high school girlfriend from Talladega and a former UNA girlfriend have restraining orders against the one-time high school tennis star. Griffin's response to the charges: "
The criminal complaint filed in district court says that Griffin told investigators that he only used the victim for sex, and that she understood her place with him."

It should be an interesting trial...

Related post: Corey Griffin



Shoalanda

Sunday, October 2, 2011

"What, Exactly, Did Bronner Do?"


The title of today's blog is a question sent to us by a faithful reader. What did Dr. David Bronner do to recruit Navistar to the Barton rail car plant? We cannot answer that question, but obviously much is owed to Forrest Wright. We can comment on the timeline.

On August 21st of last year, the TimesDaily announced that National Rail Car Ltd. in Colbert County had been purchased by RSA and renamed National Alabama. That would make the purchase just over 13 months ago. Now we're told that Bronner, etal., had been working on the Navistar deal for "more than a year." Obviously the intent of purchasing the ivory pachyderm was to enable a sale to a company of RSA's choice.

We understand the need for secrecy, but wouldn't a "no comment" have been more honest than the smokescreen of supposed accomplishments propagated by our local rag? That being said, we now have a second rumor running amok at National Alabama.

We've received several reports that despite assurances by Navistar execs, most employees can expect to receive their walking papers in the near future--presumably after Navistar hires a skeleton crew to maintain the plant. This rumor is extremely hard to assess since the Huntsville engine manufacturer has not yet commented on what it will be producing...if it even knows what it will be producing.

*****

We've confirmed that Jeremy Shane Hall, the former Russellville police sergeant, was indicted by the most recent Franklin County grand jury on seven counts of sexual abuse. This is in addition to the civil suits brought against Hall and the city for the alleged crimes

*****

Tomorrow: .Those who "have taken a stand for what is right" lose a round, but the fight continues.



Shoalanda

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Chris Gay's Sheffield Office Closed (Permanently?)


The Sheffield office of osteopath Christopher Parker Gay is again closed. This marks the third such occurrence in two years. Sources with Helen Keller Hospital and local authorities have refused comment on the state of the practice; however, those who wish not to be identified have stated the office will not reopen.

This is extremely likely to be a correct assessment on the situation. Kim Gay, Christopher's wife and office manager, is currently offering office supplies, including insurance forms, on eBay. We will publish more info as soon as it can be verified.

Related post: Another Sanction

*****

Another plus for the new immigration law? It seems that since many illegal immigrants have left the state, businesses have hired over 200 work release employees. These employees are then required to pay for their room and board, as well as pay a certain percentage of their wages to their victims, assuming they owe restitution. That's a win/win/win situation for the State of Alabama.



Shoalanda