Dennis Norwood: Mr. President, Put Down Your Fiddle. Rome Is Burning

Tuesday, July 22, 2014
It would appear as if our president has all but given up - not only on his presidency - but on governing at all. With crisis after crisis at every turn there is no late night candle burning in the White House. Instead that candle is lighting the way for a series of fundraising events.

This, my friends, scares me. Not as a Republican or Democrat, but as an American. Mr. Obama's predecessors, whether from either party, never let this be the norm. When the world was in turmoil, they were there in the Oval Office doing what they could to ensure first, that America was taken care of and, secondly, that our allies were receiving all they needed from Uncle Sam.

To think that the holder of the most powerful office in the world is out filling the coffers of his political party while these events are happening is like Nero fiddling while Rome burns. It leaves me with a very uneasy feeling. This, coupled with his plan to draw our military back to troop levels we haven't seen in more than a few decades, does not bode well for American interests.

We have planned for those decades with the very real possibility that we might be called upon to fight a conflict across three different geographic areas. With a depleted military we will not be able to do this. I know some say that we do not need to be the world's policeman. But, if not us, then who? Isolationism does not make for a defense; 9/11 showed us just how our enemies can bring the fight to our shores. If we allow our enemies to inflict damage or, even worse, to bring down our allies, we will soon find ourself alone in our belief of freedom and democratic ideals.

Our southern border has become a sieve with illegals, now of all ages, pouring through. Instead of shoring up and defending this border our present administration has opened it up, providing aid and solace to all, even proven gang members.

Our Office of Homeland Security has even denied members of Congress and the press the opportunity to inspect these aid stations. Where, Mr. President, is the transparency you promised?

Our economic system is sagging with the requirements this administration has placed on it with its practice of open borders. We continue to provide free services to the estimated 15 million illegals already within our borders. At what point will our economy finally buckle under? This is where I think candidate for the Republican primary in the 3rd Tennessee Congressional District Weston Wamp has it figured out.

We're never going to bus that many people back across the border, but we shouldn't grant them citizenship, either. Mr. Wamp's plan to put them on the tax roles makes great sense. Not only does it let them help pay for their upkeep, it boosts our economy at the same time.  Thank goodness that the Canadians are happy at home.

Our longtime ally, Israel, finds itself under arms again. Not at its own choosing, but because it was forced to do so by Hamas. One only needs to review history to see that pulling Israel's chain never goes well for those who attempt it. However, the United States should be making overtures to let the world know that we back our longtime friend.

Here in our own country we see accounts every day that show how badly the Affordable Care Act is not working. Families are losing their health insurance and rates are skyrocketing while here in the Tennessee Valley our own BlueCross BlueShield is asking for a 19 percent increase. Our country needs a plan to ensure every member of every family has access to health insurance. However, voting to repeal it 40 times without offering a viable alternative is not the answer.

We'll save the IRS debacle for another day.

Mr. President, Rome is burning. Put down your fiddle.

(You can reach Dennis at newswriter514@gmail.com or on Twitter at @DennisENorwood. These are his views and not necessarily those of the chattanoogan.com.)

During A Martin Luther King, Jr. March Is Not A Time To Campaign

It truly amazing what Martin Luther King, Jr. accomplished at just 39 years of age. He changed an entire country. Dr. King was not in elected office or in any position of power. Yet, he accomplished more than any politician.  To me the Martin Luther King, Jr.'s vision was an expectation of life centered in education, hard work, and accomplishment that in time would evolve ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: What Else $3 Can Mean

Orchard Knob Middle School, located on North Highland Park Avenue in Chattanooga, led every other secondary school in the state of Tennessee last year with 6.8 percent of its students expelled. So as people are working feverishly to keep the school from being taken over by the state’s Department of Education, allow me to pose a question. Last Friday during the last period of ... (click for more)

Haslam Unveils Comprehensive Tax Cut And Transportation Proposal Including Higher Gas Tax And Vehicle Registration Fee

Joined by mayors from across the state and leaders in the manufacturing and trucking industries, Governor Bill Haslam on Wednesday announced "a comprehensive and strategic plan to cut taxes on food and manufacturing while updating how the state provides Tennesseans the safe and reliable transportation network needed to support future job growth." The IMPROVE Act, “Improving ... (click for more)

Big Woody's Tree Service Employee Killed In Fall On Signal Mountain

An employee of Woody's Tree Service fell to his death 150 feet off a bluff while trimming trees on Signal Mountain on Wednesday. At  11:22 a.m. , a 911 call was made by an employee of the tree service reporting a man in his early 30s had fallen off a bluff the mountain while trimming trees on private property. Walden's Ridge Emergency Services responded to 6202 ... (click for more)

Tyner Outshoots Brainerd In Big 6-AA Battle

Brainerd’s Jackson-High Gymnasium was filled to capacity long before the girls game had ended Tuesday night, but the overflow crowd had come to see the second meeting between Tyner and Brainerd and a battle for first place in District 6-AA. Both are ranked in the latest state Class AA poll with Tyner listed sixth and Brainerd ninth.  Brainerd had won all four meetings ... (click for more)

No. 3 Cleveland Sneaks Past Walker Valley 59-51

CLEVELAND, Tenn. – State-ranked Cleveland blew most of a 13-point second-half lead, but got clutch field goals from Deontae Davis and KK Curry down the stretch and managed to stay unbeaten in District 5-3A high school basketball action with a hard-fought 59-51 victory over rival Walker Valley on Tuesday night. Walker Valley’s girls defeated the Lady Blue Raiders 43-39 in overtime. ... (click for more)