Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy Birthday

This story from the Knoxville News Sentinel details how the Gideon's are celebrating 100 years of Bible distribution. Happy Birthday and Thank God they exist. I remember when I was like in second or third grade in a Knox County School, Sunnyview Elementary at the time (now Sunnyview Primary) that we had a school assembly and they gave out new testaments. But that was before the liberals led by Madeline Murray O'Hara ran God out of the school house.

I always enjoy seeing the Gideon's down on the UT campus handing out New Testaments to the College students. God is there.

Many lives have been changed. Many suicides have been avoided because of the hotel Bibles left by the Gideon's.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Imitation is the Greatest Form of Flattery

Welcome this new blog into the blogosphere, the water and air is warm.

Consent to Kill by Vince Flynn

I just finished the next Vince Flynn book in the series. As I have posted here before, I am reading the books in the order of their release. This book is the largest book, however, the emotions of the story of Mitch Rapp takes many different turns.

The political power struggle continued in Washington with the politicians all trying to protect their own selfish ambitions. In this book, Mitch Rapp becomes the focus of radical extremists that have placed a bounty on his head. As of this point, this is my favorite.

Let’s review all the other books Term Limits, Transfer of Power, The Third Option, Separation of Power, Executive Power, Memorial Day and now this one Consent to Kill. Next up is Act of Treason. However, I am going to take a brief break and read the two books that I received for Christmas 2008. First up will be Former Republican Presidential Candidate Mike Huckabee’s Do the Right Thing and then Ted Turner’s book Call Me Ted.

Check out Vince Flynn’s website, here

Saturday, December 27, 2008

New Blog in the Blogopshere

Here is a new blog in the blogosphere. What drew our attention to this blog? This excellent post concerning Jack McElroy, Scripps and Wall Street. Now, Brian's Blog doesn't feel like the lone voice in the blogopshere.

Friday, December 26, 2008

39 Years Ago Yesterday

Thirty Nine years ago yesterday, Arthur Blessitt (the originator of The Jesus Movement) set out on a journey across America carrying a cross. 38 years later, 315 countries and more than 38,000 miles walked, Arthur Blessit concluded his journey in June of 2008.

I recently received an advance copy of his forthcoming book, The Cross. I have finished reading the advance copy and will be posting about it prior to the books release of January 6,2009. In March of 2009 a movie will also release in theaters.

In the meantime, Check out Arthur Blessitt's website here.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Have Yourself a Merry Little 2008 Christmas!

Brian Hornback and the entire Brian's Blog team of sources wish you and yours a Very Merry Christmas. Santa is fun, Christmas shopping is a blast. But along with all the fun that we all have, let's also remember and spend some quality time reflecting on the Reason for the Season!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Arnett Leaves Work Early?

On December 15, 2008 one of our sources attended the Knox County Commission meeting. Our source indicated that as they were walking to the City County Building at 12:30 p.m. Arnett's car was parked in his designated spot. When they walked back to their car at 2:41 p.m. they noted that Arnett had obviously left.

Did he go home early? Did he go to do his Christmas shopping? He was not at his office. He was not recording the actions of the Commission meeting, which is the responsibility of his office. It appears that voters will need to start reporting the whereabouts of one Foster Arnett.

So if he is not going to be at his office and he is going to tow any vehicles parked here. Shouldn't Knox County make this parking space available to handicapped citizens instead of making them park two blocks away and traveling to the courthouse passing this unused parking space? What is the value of this parking space? Should it be reported as income to Arnett? After all it is a work perk that has monetary value.

Seventh District County Commission Candidates

O.k. if Seventh District Commissioner Smith gets his way with his cronies on Commission. They will be appointing someone to fill Commissioner Scott Moore's seat until the appeal of his ouster is successful.

First, we have James McMillian a formerly unsuccessful candidate to Smith so he is not likely to gain enough support to win the nomination. Then we have Michelle Carringer an employee of General Sessions Court Clerk Cathy Quist and the daughter of the Knox GOP Chair Irene McCrary. Certainly a violation of cronyism. Then there is Chuck Severance, son of former Mike Ragsdale and Tommy Schumpert employee Phyllis Severance and member of the Knox County Greens Committee (aka free golf). This would be another violation of cronyism.

That leaves Lillian Williams, successful Powell businesswoman and now enter Steve Ross. Here is some information on Mr. Ross.

Mr. Ross and his family have lived in District 7 since moving to Tennessee in 2001. He has witnessed the Knox County Government since being here and he believes that there have been both good and bad decisions.

He recognizes that "times are changing and it seems now more than ever, people are out for themselves other than putting others first. This trend of self service appears to flow from every professional level of public life. Someone needs to stand against this current and change the flow of this impending flood of selfishness. Government officials are to serve as a voice for the people and not to achieve personal gain."

During his adult life, he has worked in both the private and public sector including the food industry, construction, landscaping, law enforcement and medical fields. He has been a successful local business owner. He has served in the military of which he was honorably discharged. He has worked digging ditches and protected personnel occupying the highest levels of government and other leaders. He currently manages a successful outpatient medical center. Along with his professional position, he also serves the community as a Deacon in a local church, and believes honesty and integrity are required for leadership at all levels of public life. He believes that based on his work history, his service to the community and desire to serve that he would be the best choice to serve District 7.

He advised the Knox County Commission several weeks ago of his desire to be selected as Commissioner for District 7. He has no family members in the Knox County Government. For that matter he has no family or close friends in any level of city, county or state government. It is his desire to serve everyone in the district not just a select few. He believes that someone needs to stand against the current, if selected, he will.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Wamp Leads Haslam in East Tennessee

Sources near the Zach Wamp organization indicate that a recent poll was conducted by The Tarrance Group. The poll surveyed individuals within the First, Second and Third Congressional districts. Potential candidate Bill Frist was not listed in the poll. Congressman Wamp polled a positive 48%. Out of that 48% Wamp 24% of respondents indicated that they would definitely support Wamp. Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam polled a positive 20%.

It would appear from early indications that Wamp is the strongest candidate for Governor from and within East Tennessee. Those of us that have experience with statewide election rodeos for multiple cycles know that winning statewide is about who carries the most votes across the plateau. Obviously Haslam has an ability to raise money at the three or four Haslam kitchen tables and with the mega donors of the University of Tennessee, that his father can influence. But can Haslam overcome the effect of a popular, conservative Congressman that out polls the Knoxville Mayor in his own district.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

And We Care. Why?

This story from Knoxville's News-Sentinel. We Care? Why? So, if you are a Titan's fan, a Colt's fan, a Cowboy's fan or any other NFL team fan except a Steeler's fan. The message is that we are supposed to go anywhere else except a Pilot Travel Center. Because we wouldn't want the profits from our purchases supporting the enemy. Right? Right! O.k. Next non issue of the day.

Seventh District Commissioner Smith Campaigns At School Event

Last night the Halls Middle School chorus had their Christmas concert. Seventh District Commissioner Smith made a presentation where he gave his commission paycheck to the school. During his campaign in 2006 he pledged to give his commission salary minus taxes and expenses to schools and non-profits and each year it seems that he has given it to them. But, this is the first year that he has made a formal presentation during this school program.

So what has changed? Oh wait, he is still thinking about running for county mayor isn't he? That would explain his sudden public display of philanthropy, now wouldn't it?

Also, how prepared was Smith on the issue of the liquor by the drink fiasco. So, who didn't do their homework? Did the Commissioner not even look up state laws about this? Does this make him look bad? NO. It just makes him look like the ribbon cutting, camera hogging county commissioner (Mayoral hopeful) that he is.

Smith has cited and brags about his scouting involvement. He is an Eagle Scout as I am as well. But on the liquor by the drink issue Smith has violated the scout motto, Be Prepared.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

It Will Be Black Wednesday All Over Again

Last evening the Knox County Commission decided that on January 26, 2009 they will replace Commissioner Scott Moore. Nearly two years ago, January 31, 2007 a day that Knox County Commission attempted to replace term limited officials. Following that day, Walter Wojnar named it Black Wednesday. The Knoxville News Sentinel and nearly everyone else took the term as their own.

The 2009 version of Black Wednesday will happen if and when the Knox County Commission appoints Michele Carringer to the Seventh District Commission Seat. First as we have already pointed out it will smack of cronyism as she is the daughter of Knox County Republican Party Chair Irene McCrary.

The second flashback to Black Wednesday 2007 will be that it will result in an appointee that is currently employed by the Knox County General Sessions, Circuit and Juvenile Court Clerk's office. On Black Wednesday 2007 Cathy Quist employee Sharon Cawood was appointed and now if Carringer is appointed it would result in another Cathy Quist employee being appointed. Today, we confirmed with three Brian's Blog sources that Carringer is employed in Quist's office.

So, Black Wednesday 2009. Here we come!

Reaction to County Commission Meeting

Last night the Knox County Commission debated and ultimately voted on earmarking dollars for the Minvilla Manor, a homeless housing facility to be located in the former Fifth Avenue Motel at the corner of Fifth Avenue and Broadway.

The minority opposition was led by County Commissioner Mark Harmon. Former County Commission candidate Walter Wojnar in response said. “How ironic is it that the biggest bleeding heart liberal on County Commission desires to put restrictions on the homeless.”

Monday, December 15, 2008

Knox County School Board Ignores Public During A Public Meeting

After a three hour School Board workshop the Knox County School Board had a public forum on it's agenda. Two ladies addressed the school board during public forum. The board even extended an additional minute or two for the speakers to finish their remarks. As a third lady walked to the podium, a motion was quickly and hastily made to adjourn. The lady shocked that she was ignored and said this is a public forum and I have sat here for three hours.

The School Board Chair, Indya Kincannon said well, you didn't sign up and I don't know what you are going to speak about. What a minute. The School Board Chair MUST first screen the content of public comments to be addressed on public forum? You have got to be kidding me.

In a show of police force, Knox County School Security Chief approached the lady saying that she must sit down as she must sign up prior to the meeting. The lady said that she didn't know that and would like to speak. The Board Chair said I will speak with you individually. So, does that mean that the Board Chair will then violate the sunshine law in informing each board member what the lady said?

As the camera continued to roll, arrangements were made for a picture to be taken in front of the Christmas tree. Christmas gifts were given to the school board secretary from the school board and everyone was going around wishing each other a Merry Christmas.

Everyone likely will have a Merry Christmas except for that one lady that did not get her first amendment to free speech at a public forum and was instead exposed to the strong arm of police tactics from a law enforcement imitator.

The County Commission to Replace Moore

The Knox County Commission in a grab of power will select a replacement for Commissioner Scott Moore in January 2009. Although Moore has filed an appeal of the ouster decision.

Commissioner R. Larry Smith stated "this is about serving the public." Too bad, R. Larry doesn't understand that concept as he has used his position as Commissioner as a self serving power grab to assist his struggling insurance business. Once telling Commissioner Paul Pinkston during a commission meeting that he would be selling Pinkston insurance.

Sources indicate that perjury violator R. Larry Smith has informed a few individuals that he will be voting for Chuck Severance. A vote for Chuck Severance will be a vote for cronyism. Severance's mother worked for Knox County Mayors Tom Schumpert and Mike Ragsdale. A vote for Michelle Carringer also will be a vote for cronyism , as Michele's mother is Knox County Republican Party Chair Irene McCrary.

That leaves former Smith opponent James McMillian or successful Powell businesswoman Lillian Williams. It seems that Smith has made public statements in the past that he does his homework and cast informed votes. It seems on this one, R. Larry is all about cronyism.

Bill Lockett is Unprepared

Tonight at the Knox County Commission meeting an item for discussion was the possible replacement of Scott Moore on County Commission during his appeal of the ouster suit. Lockett asked the committees to defer as he would have a statement prior to taking action. His statement was about a case out of Cocke County entitled Baker.

County Commissioner Mike Hammond asked Lockett about a law that passed last year in the Tennessee General Assembly that made it mandatory for a replacement to be selected within 120 days. Lockett said he did not know and would have to check. They delayed the item until later in the meeting to accommodate Lockett's sloppy work.

I am an Eagle Scout. My Eagle Scout was awarded in 1984. Mr. Lockett was photographed in his campaign material as a Boy Scout leader. The Scout motto, "Be Prepared". Mr. Lockett failed the Scout motto today.

Tony Norman and Mark Harmon are Anti-Church

There is an item on the Commission agenda involving a church. The rules of the Commission are that a representative must be present. There was a motion to suspend the rules and approve the item. 14 Commissioners voted to suspend the rules. 2 did not. Commissioners Tony Norman and Mark Harmon are anti-church.

Knox County Property Assessor At Commission Meeting

UPDATE: 6:04 p.m. The PILOT/TIF audit is an item for discussion on tonight's Commission agenda. An item that the Property Assessor should/could/would have an interest. However, doesn't it make sense that he should/could/would do his real job until the item comes up for discussion? Which by the way did not come up until 5:30 p.m.

This afternoon our sources indicate that former County Commissioner and current Property Assessor Phil Ballard was sitting at the Knox County Commission meeting during normal business hours. Someone may need to tell him that he is the Property Assessor and that the task of re-appraisal is coming up in 2009. The taxpayers are paying his salary to run the office of Property Assessor and not sitting in the Knox County Commission meeting. He could do like all the other Knox County employees and watch the commission meeting in their City-County Building office on their televisions on Comcast cable.

Knox County Taxpayer Employees are NOW Beer Distributors

Doug Bataille, Knox County Parks and Recreation Director appeared before the Knox County Beer Board. The Knox County Beer Board is Chaired by Commissioner R. Larry Smith, the next Commissioner to be ousted for perjury.

The Knox County owned Three Ridges Golf Courses had since the year 2000 contracted the the food and beverage/beer operation. The beer board approved that Knox County employees will now be distributors of alcohol.

So, when someone becomes intoxicated and causes a death due to driving while intoxicated the lawsuit can be filed against us the taxpayers of Knox County, Doug Bataille and Beer Board Chairman and perjury offender R. Larry Smith.

Why Is Everyone "Skeered" of Bill Frist

This story in today's News Sentinel has me wondering why everyone is "skeered" of Bill Frist. Bill Gibbons of Memphis, U.S. Congressman Zach Wamp of Chattanooga have said they will run, if Frist doesn't. Congressman Marsha Blackburn, Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam and Lt. Governor Ron Ramsey are beginning to dance as candidates for Governor if Frist doesn't run.

I do not understand the fear that Frist sends through these people. The last thing we need is an executive level elected official that is willing to cave into wishes of one former Senator. If you want to lead then get out there. If you want to be the groomsman instead of the groom, then act skeered. There is no honor in being your own skeered self.

If Frist were to run for Governor and unfortunately he was elected, he would last about 36 hours. Nashville would chew him up and spit him out.

However, for the record, my prediction on this the 15th day of December, 2008 at 6:30 a.m. is that Bill Frist is too skeered himself to run for Governor. He will NOT do it.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Chip Saltsman for RNC Chairman

Here at Brian's Blog our focus occasionally is on the internal workings of the Republican Party. The KnoxGOP is an organization that within the past one and a half years has suffered from it's own dysfunction. It can only be corrected when the party reconvenes in March and selects a true leader. The TNGOP is being well run by Chair Robin Smith. However, the Republican National Committee needs a new vision, a new passion, a new focus. With an Obama/Biden leadership team taking over the executive branch and with our 41 Senators in the U.S, Senate that is not enough.

The best chance the National Republican Party has is to select native Tennessean Chip Saltsman as the next RNC Chairman. The next opportunity to take the U.S. House and Senate in 2010. Chip directed the Mike Huckabee campaign for President. Granted Huckabee came in second behind John McCain but the McCainsters do not have anyone that can step in and lead. They are all still arguing about the loss to Obama and the handling of Palin.

So, let the RNC members know that Chip Saltsman is our best effort at correcting the ship. If not, we will all be standing on the Titanic moving the chairs talking about being uniters and not dividers, they same ones talking a good game about being Compassionate Conservatives. But in reality they give away our tax money like drunken, drug users in an adult strip bar.

There is ONLY ONE Consistent Conservative and he can not clone himself 434 times.

As for me, without real leadership being put in place, I will consider jumping from the ship in March 2009 and swimming for the nearest island.

Here is the page to select your state and determine who your RNC members are. In Tennessee Mr. John Ryder and Mrs. Peggy Lambert are our RNC Committee members. Contact the TN party office by phone: (615) 269-4260 or fax: (615) 269-4260 or website and ask for the contact information for Ryder and Lambert.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Knox County Schools Only Concern is the Money

Yesterday, Hardin Valley Academy was without power for over two and a half hours before dismissing them home for the day.

This morning West Valley Middle School was without power for more than one and a half hours.

How much work can be done in a class room with limited outside light? Today there was little outside light. How much classroom instruction can be instructed without a smart board, laptops, computers and DVD players?

Why do Knox County Schools say at 9:00 a.m. that "policy states they must be without power for three hours before dismissing the students, early"? Because the School System does not receive the state funds for the students until 11:15 a.m. for Elementary and 12:00 noon for Middle and High School students.

So, now we know the real motivation. It is not about the kids or what's best for the kids. It is all about the money. Revenue producing kids. That's what it is all about.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

R. Larry Smith Joins Mike Hammond in Unethical Behavior

As we reported a few weeks ago, Mike Hammond has produced and used his voice on a Phillips Construction radio commercial. Certainly an ethical question of an unsportsmanlike nature.

Now, a review of Cariten television commercials reveal that R. Larry Smith, a licensed insurance agency director and County Commissioner is standing on camera with potential clients. In a Brian's Blog interview with the Director of Knox County Human Resources it was revealed that Cariten was Knox County's provider until January 1, 2008. So, they were the county's selected vendor from September 1, 2006 - December 31, 2007 during R. Larry's term of office. They will be eligible for re-bidding their services when the contract is up for renewal. So, now R. Larry has reached unethical proportions.

Within the next week, the evidence of R. Larry perjuring himself will be presented and a ouster suit will be sought. Sources indicate that in addition to an ouster suit that R. Larry may also face a civil case of slander.

Monday, December 08, 2008

The Cross Movie - A Forty Year Journey

This appears to be a GREAT movie to be released March 27, 2009. I will be there. I hope to see you in the audience. I remember Arthur Blessit from the 1970's. What a great story of an obedient follower of Christ.

The Cross Movie - Arthur Blessitt Movie Trailer

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Knox County Council PTA Has NO Effectiveness

On Wednesday many of our sources called to tell us that they had received emails and phone calls from their PTA's and from the Knox County Council PTA begging them to attend the Knox County School Board Meeting for Dr. McIntyre's 100 day report and vision for Knox County Schools. Their intent was to have a packed room in an effort to demonstrate that Knox County has passion for education. Their efforts didn't work, as the room was as empty as it normally is.

Dr. McIntyre, Most of us in Knox County do have a passion for education. We are not into dog and pony shows that contain empty words. We are not into supporting and wasting our time with a parent volunteer organization that does not properly reflect the views of the parents. An organization that enables one person to serve multiple years on the Great School Partnership Board without her holding the position that she is supposed to hold. An organization that in past years has not recorded it's income in and income out accurately because of their fear of showing that they had "too much" money.

So, Dr. McIntyre Say what you will do, Do what you say. Produce Results and not Rhetoric and Knox County will support you.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Congratulations to Knoxville Catholic

Knoxville Catholic High School got their first State Championship in the school's history. Congrats. A lot of the boys and their families I have known for years. Great deserving people.

On a sad note, Maryville High School's win streak of 74 straight wins came to an end today. With Hillsborough beating them for a state championship.

Alcoa won another State Championship last night. Congrats to them as well.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

I am Disappointed

With this KNS story, I am disappointed in my friend Randy Nichols. At a minimum there was a violation of running a stop sign. When Mr. Nichols own wife was pulled over years ago. She had to serve 48 hours for a DUI stop.

This is unfortunate. We all make mistakes. When we do, we should pay the penalty for the mistake and move on.

I don't fault the officer for the decision he made to turn off his mike or for letting her drive around the corner, he made a rational decision while in a good mind. Part of me wishes that she would have either been driven home (which people would have criticized) or been made to have someone get out of bed and come pick her up and drive her home.

At the end of the day, Ms. District Attorney General employee has live with the stigma of having been publicly exposed. I just hope and pray for she and her family that in the future she will just say NO.

Hallerin Hilton Hill of Citadel Broadcasting Has Bias

This morning Hallerin Hilton Hill had Dr. James McIntyre on the show taking phone calls about Dr. McIntyre's 100 day assessment and vision for the future of Knox County Schools. I called in to ask a question. I told Chris Marion, the call screen er that I wanted to ask Dr. McIntyre to talk about the difference in private and public education in Knox County. Mr. Marion placed me on hold and they NEVER got to me. I was on hold for over 30 minutes.

Hallerin announced that he is producing a special broadcast for WBIR to air next Tuesday about this issue. Hallerin has a bias and did not allow my call on the air because he recognized his own hypocrisy. He talks the talk about doing what's right for public education but he has his own child in a private school. He and his daughter have even been featured on radio commercials promoting the family's private school.

When citizens of Tennessee send their child to a private school they are with holding tax dollars from the public school system. The private school does not receive those per student tax dollars. So, those tax dollars are diverted away from public education and spent on the penal system (penitentiary) welfare and other state run entities. So, those individuals having their children in private schools are enabling jails, welfare and other state interests.

And we wonder why the State of Tennessee is near dead last.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Saxby is Number 41

Yesterday the citizens of Georgia did the right thing. They re-elected Senator Saxby Chambliss to another term as their United States Senator. Chambliss and Democrat Jim Martin were unable to garner a 50% plus 1 vote total on November 4, 2008. So they both had to campaign in a run-off election that was held yesterday December 2, 2008.

Chambliss is now Republican Senator 41 which means that President-Elect Obama will NOT have the Super Majority of 60 in the United States Senate. So, yesterday and today are great days in America.

Congratulations to Senator Chambliss and all of his campaign team.