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Columns

  • A VIEW from LICK SKILLET by Gerald Largen: Save America, vote Republican???

    Gentle reader, you have no doubt seen one or more of these signs and billboards somewhere in the county; possibly they are also being posted elsewhere, although we have been to Knoxville, Crossville, and Chattanooga in recent days and have not observed them any where else.

  • Autumn morning triggers spider senses

    I was sitting in my living room the other morning, gazing out at the fog that softened my ridge-top neighborhood. Suddenly, a bit of motion caught my eye, shaking me out of the morning mist that had also overtaken my brain.

    A garden spider, golden orb or writing spider, as some people call them, dropped gingerly into one of my azalea bushes, then rose again, placing an anchor line for a more complex structure just out of view.

    A lot of people don’t like spiders, but I’m not one of them. 

    If I had time, I could watch them all day.

  • Congress has forgotten how to oversee the balance

    By LEE H. HAMILTON
    Center on Congress
    You’ve likely never heard of William Natcher, which would have been just fine with him.

    Natcher spent four decades in Congress representing the area around Bowling Green, Ky., and for the most part the national press ignored him, just as he ignored them.

    He didn’t have time for burnishing his public image; he was what is known on Capitol Hill as “a work horse, not a show horse.”

  • Ever wonder where your property tax dollars go?

    By RON WOODY
    Roane County Executive
    In October of each year, your county and city governments sends out the annual property tax bills.

    As citizens and property-tax payers, we generally hate to see these bills and often think, “what benefits do we receive for these taxes?”

    This column will deal primarily with the property tax levy for the county government; however, before we address the property tax we will try to address an overview of the county budget as a whole.

  • A VIEW from LICK SKILLET by Gerald Largen: Wise folks will use their heads and vote for Headrick

    When writing for publication, there are sad stories, and there are happy stories, and on rare occasions there are stories that are both sad and happy at the same time.

    The story of the death of William D. Patterson is one of these: It is, of course, sad for those of us who are left behind when a loved one leaves us, but it is happy when one realizes that this object of our affectionate regard is no longer subject to the ills and unpleasantness that befalls most of us in old age.

  • Looseleaf Laureate: Vrooom, vrooom ... I’m a new road warrior

    There’s an ugly knot on my right shin and a bruise the size of Texas on my calf.
    I earned those injuries over two days of noise, fumes, heat — and fear — at a Motorcycle Safety Foundation riding class at Pellissippi State Community College’s Hardin Valley campus.
    And as a result, I now have an “M” for motorcycle operator on my driver’s license.
    For a while now, I’ve been thinking of learning to operate a motorcycle.
    I do a great job as a motorcycle passenger, but, recently, I decided I wanted more.

  • A VIEW from LICK SKILLET by Gerald Largen: It’s gala time for the Heritage Commission

    We don’t know about you, gentle reader, but we can scarcely believe that a full year has passed since we were preparing for one of the social highlights of the year 2011, the Roane County Heritage Commission’s Annual Gala, but here we are getting ready for the social highlight of 2012, the Heritage Commission’s Annual Gala.

    Beyond the food and festivities, we dare-say that one of the great attractions of this annual event is the chance to meet many old friends, and equally, the opportunity to make new friends.

  • A VIEW from LICK SKILLET by Gerald Largen: To whom much is given, of him much is required

    As this column is being prepared for submission to the publisher, the Democratic National Convention is just getting underway, and the Republican National Convention has been concluded five or six days ago.

    Due to these circumstances there is as yet little that we can say about the Democratic get-together in Charlotte, and a very great deal about which we could comment arising from the Republican assembly in Tampa, including addresses by Mrs. Romney, Mr. Ryan, and the Governor himself; not to mention Clint Eastwood’s performance.

  • A VIEW from LICK SKILLET by Gerald Largen: What does Holy Bible mean to Romney/Ryan?

    Percipient reader, you will doubtless recall that when a major hurricane was descending upon a major U.S. city a few years ago, a prominent Virginia preacher, since deceased, opined that this was a sign of God’s displeasure with some of the things taking place in that city.

  • County exec looks to the future

    By RON WOODY
    Roane County Executive
    I am approaching my two-year anniversary as new management for your county government.
    I appreciate the support you gave and hope your support and confidence continues as we journey forward.

    I promised to manage on a five-point star management system and will continue with this
    approach the next 24 months.

    Details of our focus, tasks, management and the five-point star management system can be found on the county’s website, www.roanegov.org.