Recent Articles:

Senator David Perdue Contradicts Himself — Again

By Dave Oedel

This could be an awkward six years as Georgia citizens figure out who it is they really elected to the U.S. Senate.

Freshman U.S. Senator David Perdue, R. Ga., in his first speech from the well of the Senate in Washington D.C. on April 27, 2015,  said that we’re in the midst of a constitutional crisis. Why? Because, Perdue said, we have “allowed this President to run the country without Congress for the past six years.” Perdue said that, to “create a new beginning, we must get back to our founding principles, articulated in our Constitution.”

That rhetoric matched Perdue’s campaign statements, after which he handily beat Michelle Nunn, 53-45 percent, on November 6, 2014. Nunn had offered a more solicitous view of presidential authority – a view that Georgia’s voters firmly rejected.

This past week, though, Perdue again acted in apparent contradiction to his own early rhetoric when he voted to cede “fast-track” trade authority to the president.

The Macon Monitor already noted in prior editions … Continue Reading

Two Macon Brothers Speak About Gang Affiliation


The Macon Monitor met this week with two Macon-Bibb citizens who acknowledge gang affiliations, but who dispute the perception by many public officials and members of the public that gangs and gang affiliations are themselves the major cause of violent crime in Macon-Bibb. G-Rell, 30, is affiliated with the Crips, and wore blue clothing to our meeting at a Unity-N-Community office.  Johntellis Mathis, 27, is affiliated with the Blacc Team, and wore black clothing. Both are affiliations common in their respective neighborhoods. Mathis joined the conversation later.

Monitor: How long have you been affiliated with a gang?

G-Rell: Since I was about 10. But it’s not what you think, all fighting and shooting and such. It’s a brotherhood. And it’s also about … Continue Reading

Why Allen Peake Lost the Majority Leader Position, and What that Might Mean Going Forward for Peake

By Dave Oedel

Georgia House Representative Allen Peake from Macon lost the majority leader position by a reported 69-44 vote of the majority Republican caucus on Monday, May 11, 2015 under the Gold Dome in Atlanta.  Jon Burns from Newington in rural far-east Georgia prevailed. Peake was seeking to move up from the secretary/treasurer position, a position Peake relinquished to run for majority leader. The leader’s spot is being vacated by Larry O’Neal from Bonaire, also in Middle Georgia. O’Neal has resigned to assume an appointment by the governor to a position as a leading administrative law judge on tax matters. Bruce Williamson of the city of Monroe won Peake’s old slot as secretary-treasurer.

In effect, Middle Georgia’s clout in the legislature, with O’Neal retiring and Peake losing, took a double hit.

However, Peake’s loss wasn’t surprising. Peake’s reputation … Continue Reading

After Tsarnaev Gets Death, a Middle Georgia Marathoner and Law Professor Ponders the Death Penalty


By Dave Oedel

On Friday, May 15, 2015, the Boston marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19 at the time of the bombing two years ago, was sentenced by a unanimous federal jury to death instead of life in prison after Tsarnaev earlier had conceded participating in the murders.

My wife and I have run the Boston Marathon three times in the past few years, and my sister-in-law witnessed the bombs exploding near the finish line. None of that gives me any more insight than anyone else on the appropriateness of the death penalty in Tsarnaev’s case. In its extensive coverage yesterday, though, the New York Times suggested that most Massachusetts citizens, where I was born and raised, and by extension many Boston marathoners, are offended by the verdict.

The Times and its friends didn’t poll me. After young Dzhokhar tried to kill people like my family members and me at the world’s most iconic marathon, … Continue Reading

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