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 [ Text Menu: Today's Stack of Stuff | Audio | About Ralph | Contact Ralph | Ralph Rant! ]October 21, 2014 

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

Check out the top 10 topics from last week.
 Illegal aliens conduct voter ground game in Nashville
  Illegal aliens were going door-to-door in Nashville Tuesday, urging registered immigrant voters to make their voices heard in the upcoming election. One of them, Fisk University sophomore Dianna Montero says she has been in this country since she was 3 years old, but she is not a U.S. citizen. Montero is one of many volunteers who plan to knock on 4,000 Davidson County doors before Nov. 4. Eban Cathey with the Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition, told Channel 4 News, "The face of voters in Nashville is changing. In the primary election, we saw a large African-American community turn out in primaries. I think in this election we're going to see a large immigrant community turn out." Early voting starts today in Tennessee.
  wsmv.com: Undocumented immigrants urge voters to exercise their right    

 Dallas officials to seek emergency declaration
  Dallas County Commissioners are set to meet this afternoon to discuss whether to call on Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) to declare an emergency to deal with Ebola. The declaration would give officials greater authority to impose travel restrictions on health-care workers who are being monitored for Ebola symptoms. Separately, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) called on President Barack Obama to consider a ban on travel to the United States from Ebola-stricken countries. Sen. Bob Corker likewise called on President Obama to restrict tourism and non-essential travel from the region of West Africa most effected by the virus.
  Washington Post: Dallas County officials seeking travel restrictions to keep Ebola in check    

 Rain, wind, batter Middle Tennessee
  Another round of heavy rain and winds pounded Middle Tennessee Monday, drenching a waterlogged region and leaving a trail of downed trees and power lines. The National Weather Service radar showed signs of a tornado in Clarksville, although that was not confirmed Monday. Thousands throughout Middle Tennessee were without power at the height of the storms. No injuries have been reported. A flash flood warning remains in effect for much of Middle Tennessee until 1 p.m. Tuesday. More than five inches of rain have fallen in Nashville so far this month. Such soggy conditions are unusual for October, which is typically the driest month of the year. Last October, only 2.34 inches of rain fell for the whole month.
  The Tennessean: Rain, wind pound Middle Tennessee    

 Some roadways may still be flooded
  There may be some residual travel issues from last night’s storm. Dispatchers with Centerville Police Department said Gray Bend Road in Hickman County was closed in both directions at 10:30 p.m. after a large tree fell into the roadway. It was expected to be cleared by 6 a.m. Murfreesboro Road was shut between Thompson Lane and Kermit Drive because of water across the roadway. It was not expected to reopen until 6 a.m. Officials said anyone on the roadways at night should be extra cautious because of flooded roadways that may be difficult to see in the dark.
  Newschannel 5: Flooded Roads, Downed Trees Reported After Severe Weather    

 DC uses race to sell pot legalization
  Unlike Colorado or Washington state, the debate over legalizing marijuana in the nation's capital is focusing on race – specifically the number of arrests of African Americans on minor drug charges. The District is on track to join Colorado and Washington state in legalizing marijuana, although Congress could thwart the effort if it wants, since the District is not a state. A poll last month showed nearly 2 of every 3 voters favor the initiative, which will be on November's ballot. Legalization advocates say decriminalization, which the D.C. Council tried earlier this year to address racial disparities in arrests, hasn't done enough, citing police statistics that show most of the $25 tickets for possession of up to an ounce are being handed out in predominantly black neighborhoods. Some drug-policy experts say the race factor means this referendum can't help but change how the nation talks about marijuana. "I think D.C. is going to probably set off a chain of events in which communities of color generally and cities in particular take on the issue of legalization as a racial justice, social justice issue in a much stronger way than they have so far," said Bill Piper, director of national affairs at the Drug Policy Alliance. It’s unclear how the federal government will react. In Colorado and Washington state, the federal government told the states they must keep legal pot off federal property such as parks and other huge swaths of U.S. land. That could be more complicated in the District, where the situation can change from block to block.
  myway.com: DC adds race to nation's debate on legalizing pot    

 False Ebola alarm delays plane in Nashville
  We have another instance of the Ebola scare disrupting life as we know it in Nashville. Emergency crews were called to Nashville International Airport overnight after someone on a flight from Dallas reported a medical issue. Medical crews responded in protective gear to evaluate the patient and transport him to Vanderbilt University Medical Center. The Office of Emergency Management and the Tennessee Health Department were also involved. The American Airlines flight from Dallas to Nashville landed around 11:30 p.m., but passengers were kept on board until around 2:30 a.m. The state confirmed that the patient had not been to Africa and had not had contact with anyone who was exposed to the Ebola virus. On Sunday, another false alarm brought responders in full hazmat gear to a gas station in Mt. Juliet to transport a woman to the hospital, where she too was pronounced Ebola-free.
  The Tennessean: Dallas-to-Nashville plane held at airport due to sick passenger    

 CDC 'rethinking' Ebola treatment protocols
  Government officials said Monday that the first transmission of Ebola in the United States had revealed systemic failures in treatment that must “substantially” change in coming days. “We have to rethink the way we address Ebola infection control, because even a single infection is unacceptable,” said Thomas Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Frieden did not detail precisely how the extensive, government-issued safety protocols in place at many facilities might need to change or in what ways hospitals need to ramp up training for front-line doctors or nurses. But his message was clear: With Ebola, there is no margin for error. Federal, state and local health officials on Monday raced to investigate how Nina Pham, a nurse at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, became infected with Ebola. The 2010 graduate of Texas Christian University’s nursing program was part of the team that treated Thomas Eric Duncan, a Liberian man who died Wednesday after more than a week at the hospital. Ebola can easily infect those who come into contact with the bodily fluids of Ebola patients, and official say the smallest slip in putting on or taking off protective gear can open the door to the virus. As investigators work to figure out how Pham got infected, health officials already are considering exactly what protocols need strengthening at U.S. hospitals. “We have not identified a specific problem that led to this infection,” Frieden said. “We have identified a series of things where we can make the care safer and easier for the health-care workers that are providing it.” Some new measures already are being put in place, Frieden said. Among other things, the CDC says a “buddy system” is essential for health-care workers to ensure the proper removal of protective gear. It is unclear whether that practice was in place in Dallas and how common it is elsewhere.
  Washington Post: CDC chief: After Dallas nurse’s Ebola infection, U.S. must ‘rethink’ protocols    

 Chicago mayor dodges teacher's union bullet
  Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel may have dodged a bullet. The head of the Chicago Teacher’s Union, who was outpolling Emanuel by double-digits, has decided not to run. Karen Lewis has been hospitalized since surgery last week. Union officials said she had a “serious” illness but did not release details. A statement Monday evening did not mention her health. Instead, it praised workers from all parts of the city who circulated petitions to get her on the ballot to challenge Emanuel, who’s come under heavy criticism over the city’s high homicide rate and his handling of racial politics.
  politico.com: Karen Lewis won’t challenge Rahm Emanuel in Chicago    

 Officials spare dog of Ebola stricken Dallas nurse
  Animal rights activists are cheering the decision to spare the dog of the nurse diagnosed with Ebola virus in Texas. Dallas officials announced Monday that the dog of Nina Pham, the Dallas nurse, will remain in a safe place to await its owner’s recovery. The dog, a Cavalier King Charles spaniel named Bentley, was moved Monday afternoon, officials said. Concerns over whether pets, specifically dogs, can pass Ebola to humans emerged last week after Spanish health officials euthanized the dog of a Spanish nursing aide diagnosed with Ebola, citing concern that the dog could infect humans. The government’s decision surrounding the 12-year-old rescue dog, named Excalibur, triggered vehement protests from animal-rights activists, who demanded the dog be quarantined and tested. The dog displayed no symptoms of Ebola. Both international and local health authorities say there is no reason to worry that the dog will transmit the virus. “We have no evidence that domestic animals—whether dogs or cats and so forth—are able to transmit the virus to humans,” said Christine Hoang, assistant director of the scientific activities division at the American Veterinary Medical Association.
  Wall Street Journal: Dog of Dallas Nurse with Ebola to Be Kept in Safe Place    

 Documents support charge of collusion on power plant rules
  Newly released emails detail what Republicans say are "cozy" ties between the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and a top environmental advocacy group, raising questions about the group's influence -- and participation -- in the Obama administration's so-called "War on Coal." The emails, released by Republicans on the Senate environment committee, appear to support the charge of collusion between the EPA and the Natural Resources Defense Council in drafting what they claim are onerous federal regulations on coal-fired power plants and other sectors. One 2010 exchange even shows the EPA's future boss and a senior environmental lawyer praising each other over a legal settlement, though they ostensibly were on opposing sides of that case. Sen. David Vitter (R-La) and Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., have been investigating "alleged collusion" on regulations between the EPA and environment groups. According to their offices, the NRDC has gotten $1.9 million from the EPA in grants since 2009. They and other Republican lawmakers have requested documents on the NRDC's involvement in the power plant and other rules, calling it "harmful and outrageous" that one group "drafted" a rule that puts "a tremendous cost on everyday Americans through increased electricity prices." The EPA has not responded to that request.
  Fox News: Emails show ‘cozy’ ties between EPA, environmental group over power-plant rules, senator says    

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.