Tennessee Poised for Power if GOP Takes Senate

I recently attended a luncheon where Tennessee Republican Senator Lamar Alexander spoke about why it’s important to re-elect not only him but to elect Republican Senators across the country. I think everyone who follows politics is very interested in whether or not Republicans will control the US Senate and what that can mean for the future of the country.  Who governs matters and it particularly matters for the State of Tennessee this time.  Here’s why. Lamar Alexander is the ranking member of the Health, Education, Labor  & Pensions Senate Committee.  What that means is he is the senior Republican on the Committee.  Presumably if the GOP takes the Senate in November, he will become chair of a very important committee.  The Affordable Care Act, aka ObamaCare, came through that committee.  Even if legislation abolishing it or changing it dramatically passed, it would most likely be vetoed by the lame duck President Obama, but we have to try and only if Republicans control the Committee can we begin the process of making changes. Senator Alexander talks about his first act as Chairman of that committee would be to move many federal regulations and acts on education back to the state level.  He would simplify the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)  for college students, now 180 plus questions, down to about 3 or 4.  That just makes good sense. In addition to being the ranking member  on Health, Education, Labor, Senator Alexander is also the ranking member on the Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy & Water. This is the Committee where the appropriations for  Oak Ridge, the Appalachian Regional Commission and other important area priorities are approved. Equally important to Tennessee is the position of our junior Senator Bob Corker on the Foreign Relations Committee.  He is also the ranking member who presumably would become Chairman if the GOP takes the Senate.  Corker has become very important and a real leader on foreign relations issues.  In these times of turmoil on several fronts in the Middle East, the Ukraine and China, I know I would sleep better at night if I knew Bob Corker, a smart, common sense Tennessean, was leading that  Committee instead of Democrat Robert Menendez.  If you didn’t see Senator Corker’s questioning of Secretary of State John Kerry recently on the ISIS issue, you should.  Go to the Foreign Relations Committee site and watch. What can we do to make sure that happens and Tennessee assumes a real position of power in the US Senate?  For one, make sure we reelect Lamar Alexander.  Seniority matters and Lamar has it.  If you want to send a contribution to Republican candidates in Arkansas, North Carolina or Kentucky, do so...

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Transitioning from Gen Y to Gen Z

The following was sent to me by the head of  my teen grandson’s middle school.  If you are the parent or grandparent of a Generation Z, I highly recommend this read. GENERATION Y TO GENERATION Z The following blog is from Tim Elmore of Growing Leaders. Tim continually provides interesting information for parents and those of us who work with adolescents. He often reminds us that we are raising kids in a very different era than when we were growing up. His examples help illustrate this point. How Generation Z Differs from Generation Y The numbers are just coming in from studies of younger teens, who are part of Generation Z (also known as “Homelanders,” these kids follow Generation Y). They are part of a population that grew up post-9/11, where terrorism is part of the landscape, a sour economy is all they remember, and uncertainty defines our mindsets. In many ways, we need to stop assuming they’ll simply be extensions of Generation Y (or the Millennials). They are the younger counterparts to that older generation and have grown up with new technology that’s marked them. While Generation Y grew up with computers, Generation Z grew up with touch-screens. Their phones have always been “smart.” Bill Clinton is a president from history, and Madonna is an aged veteran . . . like Elton John or Michael Jackson. They never knew her when she was “like a virgin.” We live in a new day. The Shifts This New Generation Will Bring . . . While Generation Y spent money boldly and with few boundaries, 57% of Generation Z prefers saving money to spending it. While Generation Y spent loads of time at the mall, Generation Z prefers shopping online for almost all their purchases . . . except for online games. Hmmm. While Generation Y grew up during a strong economy, Generation Z is growing up in a time of recession, terrorism, violence, volatility, and complexity. While Generation Y subscribed to everything social, Generation Z doesn’t want to be tracked, preferring Snapchat, Secret, or Whisper to communicate. While Generation Y watched YouTube, Hulu and Netflix, Generation Z wants to co-create, live stream, and help to make up the activity as they participate. While Generation Y loved sports and adventure, Generation Z sees sports as a health tool, not for play. Their games are inside. Teen obesity has tripled since 1970. While Generation Y grew up with slightly longer attention spans, Generation Z has an attention span of 8 seconds. Approximately 11% have ADHD. While Generation Y initiated text messages as a norm, Generation Z prefers communicating through images, icons and symbols. While Generation Y worried about their growing social status...

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Eighth Annual East Tennessee History Fair

If the term “jam-packed” ever defined a one-day festival, it would be most appropriate at the Eighth Annual East Tennessee History Fairsponsored by the East TennesseeHistorical Society on August 16th! And you might wonder if anyone in our modern tech age would be interested.  But with record numbers in attendance… Read more...

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Susan Williams and 29 other remarkable women to be honored by YWCA Knoxville

“On Aug. 21, 2014 the YWCA Knoxville will celebrate the 30th anniversary of its Tribute to Women event by highlighting 30 remarkable women who have impacted the community in the last 30 years. The honorees will be acknowledged at a red-carpet-style celebration at the Knoxville Convention Center. The event will begin with a reception at 5:30 p.m. and the official program will begin at 7 p.m. Tickets are $85 and include the reception, heavy hors d’ oeuvres, one complimentary drink ticket, and the awards ceremony. Tickets can be purchased by calling 865-523-6126 or online at www.ywcaknox.com.” Read...

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