Fred Phillips…

I was reading this post.  Something jumped out at me that I had not seen when reading the original article in the Johnson City Press.  Phillips states, “The fact is, Bredesen’s administration didn’t hire any of those people. And they surely wouldn’t have been hired as a Washington County deputy sheriff.”  Who are “those people?”  Is he talking about the one’s who received the advancement?  Is he talking about the one’s who gave the advancement?  What were the punishments? 

Also, why are people not asking another question?  The whole mess had to do with political favoritism.  Bredesen supporters were moving through the ranks.  (If someone believes this doesn’t happen in state affairs they are crazy.  It has always gone on.  It shouldn’t, and when it does the leaders should be accountable.)  Well, Bredesen wanted to clean things up.  Right?  So, what does he do?  He hires an outside firm who will be fair and everything will be kosher there.  Right?  Wrong!!!  He hires Kroll, Inc. with a $200,000.00 no bid contract.  Their “senior person” in Nashville is… Michael Shmerling.  Who is he???  Oh, he donated $12,500.00 or more to the Bredesen campaign from 2002 to the present.

Now, Phillips, who oversaw the THP during the scandal, wants to come home and run for State House.  If he wins, which may be possible, let’s hope he doesn’t get caught up in anymore scandals.  He seems to be a good man who may have been at the wrong place at the wrong time.  But… isn’t that true with those who were caught up in the Tennessee Waltz Scandal?


Published in: on October 17, 2006 at 11:13 am  Comments (1)  

SOF – Elections

Okay, so many of you have noticed that I took a bit of time between posts.  Some unforeseen circumstances have caused me to take time away, and these circumstances will continue to do so, so there will be some minor changes coming that will effect the layout of this blog.  Plus, I have not jumped into local issues as much as I would have liked.  So, here is your chance.  There are some local elections and statewide elections.  Let’s have some dialogue about these.  The following elections are here in the SOF area:

Jonesborough Mayoral Race – Roger Dillow v. Tobie Bledsoe 

State House District 1 – Jon Lundberg, Kevin Smith, Jerry Dykes, John Robert Harrison

State House District 7 – Matthew Hill v. Fred Phillips

State House District 9 – Mike Harrison v. Lewis Hopkins, Jr.

State House District 11 – Charlotte Leibrock v.  Eddie Yokely

State Senate District 1 – Steve Southerland v. Duran Williams

US House District 1 – David Davis, Rick Trent, Michael Peavler, James Reeves, Mahmood Sabri, Robert Smith

US Senate – Bob Corker, Harold Ford, Jr.,  Ed Choate, David Gatchell, Bo Heyward, Gary Keplinger, Chris Lugo

TN Governor – Jim Bryson, Phil Bredesen, George Banks, David Gatchell, Marivuana Stout Leinoff, Charles Smith, Howard Switzer, Carl “Twofeathers” Whitaker

 Give me your feedback on each race.  Who will win?  What is the key to victory?  Who gets your vote?

Published in: on October 12, 2006 at 12:03 pm  Comments (1)  

EE’s Pig of the Week – 10/2/06 – Mark Foley

This week’s Pig of the Week is for Republican Representative, Mark Foley.  You have heard by now about his pursuit of underage boys.  This is shocking to say the least.  I have heard nothing about him apologizing for this act.  Sure, he has apologized, but he never stated exactly what for.  More than likely, it is due to a pending court case.  In an unsurprising move, he has decided to go into rehab.  Notice, he did not choose to enter rehab until he got caught.  He is not sorry he did it.  He is only sorry he got caught.  If he were truly sorry, he would have entered rehab long ago.

Now, my advice to Democrats is very simple.  Do not politicize this.  The American people are not stupid enough to believe that the Republicans knew this all along.  If someone is found to have known any illegalities, then (s)he should be brought forth, but do not create a witchhunt.  If you do create a witchhunt, it will backfire.  We (Americans) already see unfair politicization on both sides.  You want to criticize Iraq?  Go ahead, but don’t be hypocritical.  Partisan politicization only harms the nation.  If we criticize fairly, then we will be much better for it.  As for Foley, he should never see daylight again if he is found to have ever harmed a child.

Mark Foley, you are a Pig!

~ EE

Published in: on October 2, 2006 at 10:08 pm  Leave a Comment  

Focus Above – 10/1/06 – Suffering is Inevitable

Job 5:7

“Yet man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upward.”

How do we, as Christians, cope with the problem of unmerited suffering? The first thing we must do is to recognize that in a universe whose balance has been greatly upset by sin, undeserved suffering is bound to come. Face this, and you are halfway to turning the problem into a possibility. In an Indian palace, many years ago, a child was born whose parents decided to keep all signs of decay and death from him. When he was taken into the garden, maids were sent before him to remove all the decaying flowers and fallen leaves, so that he would be protected from all signs of suffering and death. One day, however, he left his home and, while wandering through the streets, came across a corpse. His reaction was so strong that he set about establishing the teaching that, as life is fundamentally suffering, the only thing to do is to escape into Nirvana, the state of extinction of self. The young man was Guatama Buddha, whose beliefs are shared by millions of his followers, not only in India but around the world. His philosophy is a dramatic and tragic result of trying to protect oneself from the realities of life, one of which is suffering. The Christian faith is the opposite of that: it exposes us to the very heart of suffering – the cross. Then it takes that suffering, and turns it into salvation. This is why Christians should not be afraid to face the worst that can happen – because with God it can be turned into the best.

I like the truth of this.  We, as Christians, realize that we live in a fallen world.  Things are not going to always go right.  In fact, we are promised the opposite.  We are also a people who need to understand that we are a special people.  Our religion is based on suffering.  After the Fall of Man, God shed the blood of animals to cover Adam and Eve.  Because of sin, man and the rest of creation suffered.  With our redemption, it was imperitive that suffering occur.  With suffering we fell.  With suffering we are redeemed.  Let us remember that Christ’s suffering was so that we would not have to suffer after this life.

~ EE

Published in: on October 1, 2006 at 2:21 am  Comments (1)  

E.E.’s Choice 9/30/06 – Interview of Elihu Embree

What made you decide to blog?

I want to make a difference.  I want to help people understand the issues that are facing America.  We have many issues that we are facing.  The politicians let us know what many are, about this time.  The thing is, they really do not tell us about the issues that mean something.

What are you referring to?

Well, there are many issues that are damaging to our Constitution.  Examples are the McCain-Feingold trash, the (un)Patriot Act, non-Congress declared wars, restrictive gun laws, anti-Christian laws, and laws restricting true freedom of speech. 

Are you really just out to get a particular party or those of a particular political persuasion?

Absolutely not!  I consider myself to be a Republican.  I have voted for Republicans and Democrats.  I will continue to vote for both, and even Independents.  I look at how the individual stands on the Constitution.  I fear that our nation has lost an understanding of the Constitution.  We need to stand on its principles. 

Isn’t voting for 3rd Party candidates just wasting a vote?

Sadly, I would have to say yes.  Some times, they have won, but usually we do not give them enough votes to make the major candidates fear them. 

Where do you stand on the issues?

I am generally considered a Conservative on the issues.  I believe that the best government is that closest to the people it serves.  I believe in government from the grassroots.  We should attempt to place most issues in the hands of the most local government possible.  For example, education should be put in the hands of the parent.  National security cannot be handled completely at the county level.  Individuals can take some of the measures into their own hands.  The people can own guns.  The community can set up watch plans.  The city/county can have a police force.  The state has a police force and some military force.  The national government maintains the FBI, CIA, and most of the military.  We have federalism so that we do not have an overbearing national, central government. 

What do you think about single-issue voters?

Well, many people are.  That is how it is.  One thing will determine how many vote.  I don’t like to do it, and it has its weaknesses.  In our system, it causes one political party to take one side and the other party to take the other side.  The Republicans may have the better idea.  Well, on another issue, the Democrats may take the better side.  Now, I have to decide which is the lesser of two evils.  I do not wholly like the Republicans.  I do not wholly agree with the Democrats.  If it is a very important election, I feel that I cannot let the Dems win, so I vote for the Republicans.  I have just positively endorsed everything that I see wrong with the Republicans.  If we had a multi-party system, we would force parties to ally with other parties.  We might see a government that is extremely strong on preserving the Constitution, strong on security, and that is environmentally friendly (not tree hugging friendly).  And all of that would come about with us voting for the issues most important to us.

What is your view of the future of American politics?

I am optimistic.  With the rise of bloggers, I feel that there is now a medium which can save our nation.  If we miss our chance to mobilize with this new medium, however, I see nothing else on the horizon to save us. 

Published in: on September 30, 2006 at 9:56 pm  Leave a Comment  

Hot… Not… 9/29/06



Hot:  The Tusculum College Lady Pioneer’s Soccer team is undefeated at 8-0-1 on the season.  They are ranked at 10th in the nation and they upset the number 3 Carson-Newman Lady Eagles on Wednesday.

Not:  The Tusculum College Pioneers Men’s Soccer team was ranked 22nd in the nation to begin the season.  They got into some trouble while working the Bristol Race when a large sum of money was stolen by some players.  Since then, the season has been suspended and the coaches have resigned.  The offending players have not been punished.


Hot:  Tennessee Vols’ starting QB, Erik Ainge, is 70-106 for pass completions at .660 with 8 TD’s and 5 INT’s (going into the
Memphis game).  He has improved greatly since last season, and he is looking to get UT back to a bowl game this season.

Tennessee Titans Head Coach, Jeff Fisher has made questionable moves this season, and his team has not won a game since December 11, 2005.


Hot:  Paul McCoy ran for 658 yards in a high school football game.  McCoy piled up his yardage on just 29 carries — an average of 22.7 yards per attempt — and scored 10 touchdowns as Matewan beat Burch 64-0 on Friday. McCoy racked up 477 of his yards scoring on TD runs of runs, which covered 69, 1, 52, 56, 52, 20, 31, 84, 87 and 25 yards.

Not:  Terrell Owens was reported to have committed suicide this week.  He came out saying that he had not, but details are sketchy.  He has caused several distractions over his football career.  Let’s hope that he gets the help he needs if he did attempt suicide.



Hot:  Candidate for US House District 1, David Davis, picked up another endorsement this week.  The National Federation of Independent Business gave the latest endorsement.  David Davis’s website is filled with endorsements, while his opponent’s website lists none.

Tennessee House Candidate for District 7, Fred Phillips, is accused of lying about receiving an endorsement from the NRA after his website declared the endorsement when, in fact, not only did he not receive the endorsement, but his opponent did.


Hot:  Harold Ford Jr., U.S. Senate Candidate for
Tennessee, is shown to be leading Corker by 6 percent in his campaign’s latest poll.  While there is a great chance for the poll to be biased, the Ford Jr. Campaign has been gaining.  The election may be a close one.

Not:  Al Gore has discovered that cigarette smoking is a “significant contributor to global warming.”  This adds to his other scientific achievements such as his invention, the internet.  Seriously, he has taken on a great work.  Protecting the environment is a noble cause, but his hysterics borders on the wacko.


Hot:  The US Senate passed a bill to build a 700 mile fence along the Mexico-US border.  They actually got something right.

Not:  Former Rep. Mark Foley (R-Florida) resigned over sexual advances made toward underage boys (Click here for a .pdf file of some of the messages).  I hope that there is a criminal investigation.


Hot:  Javier Solana, EU Foreign Policy Chief, was set to meet with
Iran over nuclear talks.  He has many great accomplishments (
Click here).  He is someone that causes me some concern, but he has been on fire.

Not:  At a UN meeting, the President of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, referred to President Bush as the devil.  Maybe Pat Robertson was on to something.

Published in: on September 29, 2006 at 8:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

Philosophical Thoughts – 9/27/06 – Religion

Many people have said over the years, it is better to believe in a God than to not, because if you do not believe in a God, then you might be in trouble if you are wrong?  And if there is no God, then you lost nothing.  Is this really a good way of thinking?  I say no. 

Is it possible to just say, I believe such and such?  Or, must you have some experience to bring you to that knowledge?  If you prescribe to the idea above, I must question your sincerity to that religion.  Is your faith truly strong enough to say that you really believe?  Or, is it merely a hypocritical act where you only go through the steps in saying that you believe?  Also, is one who behaves in this manner going to stay with that religion in the hard times?

Give me some feedback!

~ EE

Published in: on September 27, 2006 at 9:07 pm  Leave a Comment  

Focus on the Issues – 9/26/06 – 2nd Amendment

The 2nd Amendment says “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

What does this mean?  Does it mean that as citizens we need to be part of a militia and own guns?  Does it mean that since we do not have a militia, there is not a need to keep and bear arms?  Does it mean that we only need weapons for hunting and protection from home invaders?  What does it mean?

I want your input!  I am not going to tip my hat on this one.  I will give my answer on Saturday.  On Saturday, I will interview myself.  Umm… don’t laugh.  I promise to do a superb job.  I do need ideas of whom to interview for next week.  Submit ideas.  I need to start the process early next week to have everything ready by the following Saturday. 

Published in: on September 26, 2006 at 9:00 pm  Leave a Comment  

EE’s Pig of the Week – 9/25/06 – MSHA

The first Elihu’s Pig of the Week Award winner is…. (drum roll please)…. Mountain States Health Alliance.  The administration has proven themselves to be real pigs (people indiscriminately greedy and selfish). 

First off, they were able to block a certificate of need from being awarded to Wellmont, thus blocking competition.  My first question is, ‘why is there even a need for a CON?’  Why should the government get to decide if there is a need?  Should that not be consumer and producer driven?  Why would Wellmont spend money to open a new hospital in the Johnson City area if there was not a demand?

Now, Mountain States Health Alliance has decided that there is a need for a new hospital in Johnson City, but only if it is MSHA owned.  Granted, it is supposed to replace MSHA owned facilities.  I urge everyone, for the sake of competition, to take action.  Let’s demand that the CON to be turned down.  Maybe we should add that it be turned down, unless Wellmont’s CON is approved. 

Also, it is my understanding that MSHA is now outsourcing its environmental services to a company based out of a new state.  Most of the employees are apprehensive as to what will happen.  Many are now looking for new jobs.  Environmental Services management is possibly also facing a loss of employment.  Information is still coming out, and much of this is speculative.  MSHA employees are already underpaid and overworked.  Is it possible that it is a scheme to outsource other jobs?

MSHA, CONGRATULATIONS!!!  You earned the first ever Elihu’s Pig Award!

~ EE

 Also, if you want to support MSHA and their Pig-like move you can do a support letter to the person listed below.  Or, if you are like me, you can write a non-support letter to the person below.
North Side/Specialty Replacement Hospital
Mountain States Health Alliance
Letters of Support Request

Please address Letters of Support to:
Ms. Melanie Hill
Tennessee Health Services and Development Agency
500 Deaderick Street, Suite 850
Nashville, TN 37243

This project is the result of careful planning by MSHA to allocate its resources to meet the existing and future needs of the community, and includes the following steps:

(1) Relocation of the 13 Franklin Transitional Care Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) beds from Johnson City Medical Center (JCMC) to Quillen Rehabilitation Hospital (QRH). MSHA will de-license 13 rehab beds for a final bed complement at QRH of 47 rehab beds and 13 SNF beds.
(2) Construction of a new hospital with 80 licensed acute care beds, an emergency department, surgical care and miscellaneous support services as a replacement facility for NSH and JCSH.
(3) Transfer of remaining 64 acute care beds from NSH/JCSH to JCMC.

Reasons supporting the need for this project include the following:

• More than 30 years old, NSH was built in modular fashion with several areas of NSH that do not have sprinkler systems. The dollars needed to develop NSH into a hospital of the future is simply too cost prohibitive.
• Both NSH and JCSH have mostly semi-private rooms which are not conducive to patient privacy, HIPPA regulations, and infection control. Private rooms achieve higher patient satisfaction and facilitate family involvement in care of the patient.
• With the new facility located in Med Tech Park, it is convenient to the medical community, where multiple physician practices are relocating.
• Reallocation of beds in Washington County will relieve the congestion at the crowded JCMC campus while reducing the need for additional construction at JCMC.
• By consolidating the 2 facilities it will enable the complementary services at the sites to more efficiently operate. The ER at NSH and the operating rooms from JCSH will be combined to develop a hospital capable of providing a full array of services while reducing the need for duplication of such services as two labs, pharmacies, dietary departments as well as other support services.
• A new facility will complement JCMC in providing adequate facilities to deliver healthcare services to meet the needs of the community over the next couple of decades.

Published in: on September 25, 2006 at 8:47 pm  Leave a Comment  

Focus Above – 9/24/06 – If Your Faith is Off

2 Corinthians 5:7

“We walk  by faith, not by sight.”

When my son Karl was about eight years old, I introduced him to the game of golf. I gave him a little starter set of clubs and took him out to the course with me. Karl would tee up his ball and whale away at it with his mightiest swing. Usually he sprayed the ball all over the place. But since he could only hit it 60 or 70 yards at best, his direction could be off by 20 degrees and his ball would still be in the fairway.

As he grew up and got a bigger set of clubs, Karl was able to drive the ball off the tee 150 yards and farther. But if his drive was still 20 degrees off target, his ball no longer stayed in the fairway; it usually went into the rough. Accuracy is even more important for golfers who can blast a golf ball 200 to 250 yards off the tee. The same 20-degree deviation which allowed little Karl’s short drive to remain in the fairway will send a longer drive soaring out of bounds.

This simple illustration pictures an important aspect of the life of faith: Your Christian walk is the direct result of what you believe about God and yourself. If your faith is off, your walk will be off. If your walk is off, you can be sure it’s because your faith is off. As a new Christian, you needed some time to learn how to “hit the ball straight” in your belief system. You could be off 20 degrees in what you believed and still be on the fairway because you were still growing and had a lot to learn. But the longer you persist in a faulty belief system, the less fulfilling and productive your daily walk of faith will be. As you grow older you will find yourself stumbling through the rough or out of bounds spiritually if the course you have set for your life doesn’t agree with Scripture.

For many adults, a mid-life crisis is the result of basing their concept of success and fulfillment on the world instead of on the Word of God. Tragically, many of our children and teenagers are heading for the same fall because their beliefs are not founded on Scripture. As a result, their lives are often bankrupt before they leave high school.

I found this on the web.  How true it is.  In my blog, I hope to never cause any error for anyone, whether it be in a religious or other type of walk of life.  I hope my blog becomes a light to others.  I want it to be a forum where ideas can be discussed.  If I am ever in error, let me know.  Even if it is something minor.

~ EE

Published in: on September 24, 2006 at 9:27 pm  Leave a Comment