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 [ Text Menu: Today's Stack of Stuff | Audio | About Ralph | Contact Ralph | Ralph Rant! ]November 28, 2014 

Stay tuned! Ralph will soon be adding the topics for today.

Check out the top 10 topics from last week.
 Oops! Nashville finds $500,000 additional cost to building Sounds stadium
  You know how they tell you to check with your utilities before digging in your yard, because you don’t want to cut through a power line, cable or gas line? Mayor Karl Dean's administration is in negotiations to GIVE Piedmont Natural Gas 124 acres of city-owned property in order to cover the relocation of a natural gas pipeline DISCOVERED DURING CONSTRUCTION of Nashville's new minor league baseball stadium. Removal and replacement of the pipeline will cost around $500,000, so Mayor Karl Dean is proposing to give Piedmont Gas three parcels of land next to a liquified natural gas plant the company owns. Metro Finance Director Rich Riebeling described it as no big deal. "We had been talking to them previously about this property that they needed to provide some additional protection around their gas facilities. And so it just seemed to be a natural fit for that. We had no use for the property. We were going to put it in surplus probably, anyway. So this just seemed to be a good trade."
  The Tennessean: Sounds stadium may cost Metro 124 acres    

 Radical groups threaten violence in Ferguson
  Troublemakers from both black and white extremist groups are among those drawn to Ferguson, Missouri, now that a decision on whether to charge Officer Darren Wilson appears imminent. Several black nationalist groups, including the New Black Panthers and the Revolutionary Communists, have had an enduring presence here since August, worrying law enforcement officials at the state and federal level. Lou Downey, a supporter of the Revolutionary Communist Party, warned “If Darren Wilson walks, America must be brought to a halt.” The Klu Klux Klan has distributed fliers around the city saying that protesters have “awakened a sleeping giant” and said that “threats of violence” against police and communities will not be tolerated and will be answered with “lethal force.” Anonymous, a leaderless Internet group known to carry out cyber-attacks to advance social and political causes, has also arrived in the region. In the write-up of Friday night’s protest, the county police included this statement: “One individual was wearing a trench coat, black ‘Anonymous’ T-shirt and a white ‘Anonymous’ mask. This individual utilized a bullhorn with a siren on it, yelling profanities that included that they wanted Ferguson Police Officer Wilson ‘dead.’ ”
  Washington Post: St. Louis area braces for aftershock of grand jury’s decision on Ferguson shooting    

 Graham blames House Republicans for Obama action
  Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina joined President Obama this weekend in blaming House Republicans for Obama’s executive order giving amnesty to most of the remaining 11.3 million illegal aliens in the U.S. “Shame on us as Republicans for having a body that cannot generate a solution to an issue that’s national security, that’s cultural, that’s economic,” Graham said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “I’m close to the people in the House, but I’m disappointed in my party. Are we still the party of self-deportation?” he asked. “Is it the position of the Republican Party that the 11 million must be driven out? I have never been in that camp as being practical.” Graham saved a little bit of criticism for Obama, to appear to be fair and balanced. “He made a political decision to try to divide the Republican Party,” said Graham, “and take the office of the presidency to a level no one else has gone.”
  The Hill: 'Shame on us' for not passing immigration reform, Graham says    

 Iran deadline expires tonight, no deal expected
  The U.S. and other world powers say it will be virtually impossible to reach a comprehensive deal to curb Iran’s nuclear activities by the Monday night deadline, and they favor extending the talks. However, an extension looks headed for stiff resistance from both Democratic and Republican U.S. lawmakers. The aim of a comprehensive agreement is to constrain Tehran’s nuclear program in exchange for an easing of Western sanctions. U.S. officials have said in recent weeks that they believe Tehran could quickly ramp up its production of nuclear fuel, and potentially sabotage U.S. efforts to combat Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, if the negotiating process ends. Iran is formally negotiating with the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany, a diplomatic bloc called the P5+1. The major stumbling blocks to an agreement remain the future capacity of Iran to produce nuclear fuel and the pace at which Western sanctions will be removed, according U.S., European and Iranian officials.
  Wall Street Journal: No Iran Nuclear Deal Seen by Monday Deadline    

 Ferguson grand jury reconvenes today
  The Fergusen, Mo. grand jury deciding whether to indict a police officer in the shooting death of teenager Michael Brown met Friday but did not reach a decision, and will reconvene today, according to a county official. St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch has said he expected a grand jury decision by mid-to-late November. But that's not ultimately in his control. The 12-person grand jury deliberates in secret, without McCulloch, and sets its own schedule depending upon when the members are available. Police worked to erect barricades in nearby towns over the weekend, and shopkeepers continued to board up windows on Saturday, following a third night of arrests Friday. On Saturday night, protesters again marched in the streets of Ferguson, stopping traffic and chanting. A team of observers from Amnesty International arrived this weekend and followed the crowd. The organization sent observers to Ferguson days after Brown’s death and released a report critical of police response to protesters. Shops have long been boarded up in Ferguson, some to replace windows smashed during the unrest following the shooting in August, others to prevent damage in case of more civil disturbance. In Clayton, miles away, shopkeepers have also begun to board up their store fronts in anticipation of property damage.
  Wall Street Journal: Ferguson Grand Jury to Reconvene Next Week    

 WSJ: More redistribution = less income
  CBO numbers show that wealth is being spread under President Obama’s policies, but with little for the poor and middle class to show for it. According to the CBO, which last week updated its statistics on the U.S. distribution of income and taxes for 2011, the lowest 60% of earners all collect more in benefits on average than they remit to the Treasury. Yet even the supposed beneficiaries of Obama’s policies ended up with less in 2011 than 2007 – even when you include the value of government benefits. For the middle class in 2011—two years after the recession ended—transfers rose 25.9% over 2007 and tax payments fell by 24.4%. Yet after-tax income nonetheless fell by 1.9% over the same period. The bottom 40% experienced similar shifts, with the same outcomes. The middle quintile—the narrowest definition of the middle class—were households with market income between $49,800 and $83,300. In 2011, they paid about $7,400 in taxes and received $16,500 in transfers on average, for an average after-tax income of $59,000. That implies an effective tax rate of minus-13.7%. The comparable rates for the lowest and second-lowest quintiles were minus-35% and minus-27.6%, respectively. Only the fourth quintile (0.7%) and the highest quintile (18.9%) are net tax contributors.
  Wall Street Journal: More Redistribution, Less Income    

 GOP, Obama, spar over executive order
  Democrats and Republicans sparred Sunday over whether President Obama violated the Constitution by using his executive power to change U.S. immigration law. Sen. Ted Cruz said Obama is essentially “counterfeiting” immigration papers, taking “affirmative action to deliver benefits” to illegal immigrants, rather than exercising prosecutorial discretion. Texas Attorney Gen. (and Governor-elect) Gregg Abbot said he’s suing President Obama for violating the ‘take care’ clause of the Constitution. Abbot says Texas can show it was harmed by the 2012 DACA order and will be harmed by this one in the same way. Obama defended his action in an interview on ABC, arguing his actions did not contradict multiple previous statements about the limits on his powers, and rebutted the argument that the next Republican president could use Obama’s logic to refuse to enforce tax collections. He said it wouldn’t apply because the vast majority of people obey the tax law.
  Fox News: GOP, Democrats spar over legality of executive orders, as lawsuits begin    

 Judge expands lawsuit over 'shutdown' wages
  A federal judge is allowing hundreds of thousands of federal employees deemed “essential” during the 2013 government shutdown to join a multimillion dollar lawsuit against the government. Their argument: During a two-week period, the federal government initially only paid for one week — and even though employees were later paid for that work, they suffered losses from the initial shorted paycheck. Plaintiffs allege they were unable to pay bills on time and had to deal with creditors and should be eligible for additional damages as a result. The plaintiffs are asking for damages equal to the minimum wage for one week plus double the amount of overtime any employee worked — or $290 or more per employee.
  federaltimes.com: Hundreds of thousands of feds can join multimillion shutdown lawsuit    

 Cleveland officers kills 12-year-old brandishing fake gun
  A Cleveland police officer shot and killed a 12-year-old boy brandishing what turned out to be a replica gun Sunday. A man who called 911 told dispatchers that a boy was on a swing set and pointing a pistol that was "probably fake" and scaring everyone. The caller said the boy was pulling the gun in and out of his pants. "I don't know if it's real or not," the caller said. Deputy Chief Ed Tomba said the boy did not make any verbal threats toward the officer or point the gun, but reached into his waistband and grabbed it after being told to raise his hands. Jeff Follmer, president of the Cleveland Police Patrolmen's Association, said the officers were not told the caller thought the gun might be fake. The officer called to the park saw the pistol sitting on a table, and watched the boy grab it and put it in his waistband, Follmer said. Officials have not released the identity of the boy or the officer.
  wkrn.com: 12-year-old boy with fake gun dies after shot by Ohio officer    

 Peaceful protests seen in other cities
  Crowds ranging from about a dozen to several hundred rallied late Monday in U.S. cities from Los Angeles and New York to mostly peacefully protest a grand jury's decision not to indict the police officer in Ferguson, Missouri. The most disruptive demonstrations were in St. Louis and Oakland, California, where protesters flooded the lanes of freeways, milling about stopped cars with their hands raised in the air. Groups also gathered in Chicago, Seattle, Salt Lake City, and Washington, D.C. In New York, several hundred people gathered in Manhattan's Union Square marched to Times Square. Other than Ferguson, police reported that gatherings were mostly peaceful following Monday's announcement.
  myway.com: Thousands rally across US after Ferguson decision    

Lamar dodges amnesty question
  July 28, 2014 - The audio version of a Ralph Rant by the same name.
Rafael Cruz to rally Nashville Tea party crows
  July 16, 2014 - Pastor Rafael Cruz, father of Sen. Ted Cruz, prepares for his starring role in the Nashville Tea Party "We the people" rally.
Laura Ingraham to stump for Carr in Nashville
  July 16, 2014 - National talk show host Laura Ingraham discusses why she's coming to Nashville next week to stump for Joe Carr in his race against Lamar Alexander.
Carr defends Haslam against 'lying' charge
  April 4, 2014 - Rep. Joe Carr to VW. If you have proof Haslam has gone "all Sopranos' on you, have the courage to come forth yourself.
'Minimum'is not 'living'
  March 27, 2014 - This is for those who believe they are "stuck" in a minimum wage job, and think a higher minimum wage is the solution.
What is a free market?
  March 17, 2014 - Everyone talks about the free market, but exactly what is it?
Organized business v. Common Core Opponents
  March 17, 2014 - Here's my analysis of the campaign by organized business to protect Common Core.
Rep. Mathew Hill updates fight to repeal Common Core
  March 14, 2014 - Rep. Mathew Hill (R-Jonesborough)discusses the floor fight in the Tennessee House over Common Core, and where the fight goes next.
Looney defends Common Core
  March 14, 2014 - Williamson County School Supt. Dr. Mike Looney defends Common Core, even as he professes ambivalence about the program. He begins by answering that some central planning of the economy, and education, is beneficial.
Womick leads 'war on core'
  Mar. 11, 2014 - Rep. Rick Womick (R-Rutherford Co.) takes questions about his effort to repeal the Common Core education standards - with Common Core supporter Mark Hill, chief policy officer with the Nashville Chamber of Commerce, joining the discussion about half-way through the program.
Mr. Obama, tear down these walls
  Jan. 31, 2014 - Here's a "reenactment" of my rally rant on the occasion of President Obama's visit to Nashville.
Carr accuses Lamar of protecting Obamacare
  Jan. 24, 2014 - State Rep. Joe Carr, running for U.S. Senate against Lamar Alexander, accuses the senior senator from Tennessee of siding with the defenders of Obamacare.
Sen. Stacy Campfield - Is Lamar in trouble
  Dec. 4, 2013 - State Sen. Stacy Campfield of Knoxville discusses why he thinks Sen. Lamar Alexander is running scared.
Matheny seeks 'vertical' ammunition industry in Tennessee
  Nov. 26, 2013 - Rep. Judd Matheny (R-Tullahoma) discusses the heightened Congressional interest in the problem of terrorists coming to the U.S. through our refugee program. He also introduces the prospect of recruiting a "vertical" ammunition industry in the state, to "guarantee ammunition to Tennesseans for generations to come."
RNC plots to squeeze out South
  Nov. 5, 2013 - A Daily Beast report makes it sound like the RNC is trying to squeeze Southern voters out of the presidential selection process. Listen and see if this makes sense to you.
Lamar ad - what he should have said
  Nov. 15, 2013 - A few people wanted to hear this again.
Matheny leads refugee cost investigation
  Oct. 2, 2013 - Rep. Judd Matheny of Tullahoma, chairman of the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee, discusses the fiscal, security and federalism issues surrounding a large population of refugees from war-torn Muslim countries.
Black, Blackburn balk at Obamacare defunding plan
  Sept. 13, 2013 - Middle Tennessee Rep. Diane Black and Marsha Blackburn are not on board with a "shutdown showdown" with President Obama over funding for Obamacare.
Taxation Townhall highlight
  April 12, 2010 - Author, historian William Federer was a big hit at our Taxation Townhall Meeting on April 9th, 2010 . Here's his 3-minute lesson on the history of concentrated power. [I'm re-posting by popular demand.]
Obama v. Obama - on red lines
  Sept. 4, 2013 - No need to elaborate.
Gowdy says public, media needed for scandal justice
  Sept. 3, 2013 - South Carolina Congressman Trey Gowdy, a former prosecutor, discusses the Obama administration scandals and Obama's plan to bomb Syria. He strongly suggests Congress needs more compelling witnesses and media interest for justice to be served in the scandals - and he's very skeptical of a national interest in Syria sufficient to put American lives at risk.
DeMint argues for Obamacare defunding plan
  Aug. 9, 2013 - Jim DeMint, president of the Heritage Foundation, in the first of two live interviews, argues the plan to defund Obamacare is the last, best chance and only workable plan to stop or repeal the President's signature healthcare law, which DeMint believes is uniquely destructive to America.
Heritage Action locks horns with Corker
  Aug. 7, 2013 - Heritage Action spokesman Dan Holler rebuts Sen. Bob Corker's position that efforts to defund Obamacare are "silly" and "political."
Corker dismisses Obamacare defunding effor as political
  Aug. 7. 2013 - Sen. Bob Corker called into the program Weds. morning and continued the running debate over efforts to defund Obamacare.
The AMP - an experiment in public transporation
  Aug 3, 2013 - A Nashville's Morning News report and analysis on the issues involving a proposed Bus rapid transit system, The AMP, which would dramatically effect traffic and business on one of Nashville's busiest city streets. And that's just the beginning. [long download][runs 23 minutes]
Ralph Rant: Get to the 'top' of this
  May 22, 2013 - To preserve the Republic, Republicans in Congress cannot stop until they get, not "to the bottom of this," but "to the top of this."
ABC Analyst: IRS decision goes close to Obama
  May 21, 2013 - ABC political analyst Trey Hardin talks about his blunt assestment of the origin of the IRS scandal. “I can say with a very strong degree of certainty that people very close to the president not only knew but authorized that,” said Hardin, and much more.
Opponents rise against BRT
  May 15, 2013 - In this premeditated Ralph Rant, I break the news of a new group that has formed to oppose Nashvill'e planned Bus Rapid Transit on West End Ave.
Rick Williams, BRT opponent, speaks out
  May 15, 2013 - Rick Williams is a member of the steering committee for TNResponsibleTransit, the group opposing the planned Nashville Bus Rapid Transit on West End Avenue. You can reach him at TNResponsibleTransit@gmail.com. This is the group's debut media interview - in its new campaign to stop BRT.
Tennessee Tea Party leaders respond to IRS scandal
  May 13, 2013 - Ben Cunningham, founder of the Nashville Tea Party and Mark West, President of the Chattanooga Tea Party, respond to the IG report that busts the IRS for targeting Tea Party Groups for harassment in 2011, prior to the 2012 election.
Sen. Rand Paul on guns, immigration, taxes
  April 18, 2013 - U.S. Sen. Rand Paul discusses the failed gun bill, the immigration reform bill ahead, and the right strategy on taxes.
Leahy launches 'The Real Conservative National Committee'
  April 4, 2014 - Author, Breitbart correspondent and tea party activist Michal Patrick Leahy discusses a new organization formed to improve the ground game needed to help elect more conserative candidates to Congress, starting in 2014 with the GOP primary for U.S. Senate
Alexander on coal regs - Round 2
  June 14, 2012 - Sen. Alexander returns to respond to some of the reaction to his stand on new coal plant regulations.
Alexander defends coal regulations, says he will run again
  June 13, 2012 - Sen. Lamar Alexander defends his stand in favor of new coal plant regulations - explains why he belives Medicaid is to blame for higher college tuition - and says he intends to run for reelection in 2014.
Exclusive: The first hand account of "The Last Man to Die"
  May 11, 2012 - A 92-year-old Cookeville, TN WWII veteran solves a 67-year secret behind one of the most famous WWII photographs.

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Ralph Bristol is a 30-year veteran of radio and TV broadcasting. He is a US Air Force veteran and holds a BS degree from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. Ralph was a radio and TV reporter, anchor and news director in Missouri and Illinois before joining WORD Radio in Greenville/Spartanburg, SC in 1995.

In the spring of 2007, Supertalk 99.7 WWTN beckoned Ralph to Nashville. Ralph defies political labels, and has no partisan loyalties, but can best be described as a libertarian/conservative. Ralph writes and speaks extensively on education, tax and economic issues. In his spare time, Ralph terrorizes golf courses, invents useful things with sharp tools and dead wood, and entertains audiences with irreverent humor and contrarian insight. Invite him to speak to your group at your own risk.