published Friday, January 4th, 2013

Drew's views

Sen. Jim Tracy
Sen. Jim Tracy

HEADLINE: State Sen. Jim Tracy officially launches 2014 GOP challenge to U.S. Rep. Scott DesJarlais

THE RECAP: Republican state Sen. Jim Tracy of Shelbyville announced his bid to unseat embattled U.S. Rep. Scott DesJarlais, R-Tenn., in the 2014 4th Congressional District GOP primary.

DREW'S VIEW: It has long been rumored that the 4th Congressional District was drawn so Tracy, one of the most popular members of the Tennessee General Assembly, could one day represent the area in Congress. With the mistress-having, abortion-coercing, drug-using, patient-cavorting Dr. DesJarlais on the ropes as a result of his numerous scandals, it seems a logical time for Tracy to run for the post.

Tracy is known in Nashville as a principled conservative and all-around good guy. The problem is, so is State House Assistant Majority Leader Kevin Brooks, R-Cleveland. And so is state Rep. Joe Carr, R-Murfreesboro. And so are the half-dozen or more other folks considering running for the seat.

There are only so many people willing to vote against an incumbent Congressman with a proven track record, even if he has more baggage than a Sampsonite factory. As a result, as I've written in the past, if more than one legitimate challenger enters the race to run against DesJarlais for the Republican nomination in 2014, they will split the anti-DesJarlais vote and allow DesJarlais to return to Congress.

DesJarlias' potential primary opponents have to get together before the filing deadline for the election and agree on which one of them will take on the Congressman in the primary. (Tracy, because of his name recognition in the district's most populated area and his years of respectable service in the state Senate seems like the logical choice.) Otherwise, DesJarlais -- mistresses, abortions, lies and all -- will be reelected.


HEADLINE: Recession rebound: Chattanooga leads state in job growth during 2012

THE RECAP: Chattanooga was the fastest-growing major metropolitan area in Tennessee for job additions during 2012. The six-county Chattanooga region added 3,900 jobs last year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Chattanooga's 1.7 percent annual employment growth was nearly double the statewide growth of 0.9 percent during 2012. Jobs additions at Volkswagen and Amazon were responsible for much of the area's job growth.

DREW'S VIEW: Chattanooga bragging about its job growth is a little like a guy bragging about sleeping with dozens of beautiful women -- and then finding out that they are all prostitutes sleeping with him in exchange for cash.

Sure, more job opportunities in Chattanooga is a good thing. A lot of those jobs, however, came because officials shelled out hundreds of millions of dollars in giveaways to lure them to here. Volkswagen for example, received nearly $600 million in handouts and tax breaks. Amazon received about $100 million in incentives to locate distribution facilities in Hamilton and Bradley Counties. That's a lot of money out of taxpayers' pockets and a lot of lost revenues for government.

Just like it's embarrassing to pay for sex, it's embarrassing to have to bribe companies for to bring jobs to our area. Even if it makes us feel good, there's something a little icky about it.


HEADLINE: Number of women killed in Chattanooga doubles

THE RECAP: Police records show the number of people slain in Chattanooga last year was down slightly from 2011. The number of women murdered in Chattanooga, however, doubled.

DREW'S VIEW: True, the number of women slain in Chattanooga last year doubled -- but the number of men murdered fell by 24 percent.

The number of homicides in Chattanooga is so low -- 24 in 2012 and 25 in 2011 -- that any small difference year-to-year results in a big difference in stats. Don't believe me? That 100 percent increase in murdered women? It was an increase from 4 to 8. The 24 percent decreased in slain men? The number was 21 in 2011 and 16 in 2012.

The sample size of people killed in Chattanooga is, thankfully, so small that it impossible to gather any useful information by looking at the numbers. As a result, the city's homicide statistics are absolutely meaningless -- except to the media who can use the bogus stats to get more people to buy a newspaper or turn on their TV.


HEADLINE: Alexander, Corker predict few will see federal taxes increase

THE RECAP: U.S. Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker predicted last week that "almost [no] Americans" would see an increase in their taxes as a result of negotiations to avert the "fiscal cliff."

DREW'S VIEW: The U.S. Senators from Tennessee couldn't have been more wrong about how the fiscal cliff negotiations turned out. In the end, because the Social Security payroll tax rollback was allowed to expire, 77 percent of American households will face higher federal taxes in 2013. The tax amounts to two percent for most families -- $1,000 for a household earning $50,000.

It's too bad Alexander and Corker didn't spend less time making grand predictions about how the negotiations would turn out and more time actually fighting to keep most Americans from paying more in taxes.

"Drew's views" is a weekly roundup of Free Press opinions about topics that appeared in the Times Free Press over the past week. Follow Drew on Twitter: @Drews_Views.

Comments do not represent the opinions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, nor does it review every comment. Profanities, slurs and libelous remarks are prohibited. For more information you can view our Terms & Conditions and/or Ethics policy.
lkeithlu said...

Hmmm...does anyone know how many of these women were murdered by their boyfriends/husbands?

January 4, 2013 at 6:35 a.m.
aae1049 said...

The capital taxpayer investment to these tax exempt corporations will not amortize and return to the taxpayers. It's the company store.

The original UT study, made the following assumptions:

1) "We expect a significant majority of the suppliers to locate in Tennessee because of Volkswagen’s specified intent to have suppliers at the site, the specific tax benefits that accrue to suppliers in Tennessee" (page 4)

Did not happen. The suppliers did not locate to the region. The major components are transported from Mexico.

2) "This report also estimates the state and local tax revenues arising from the location. The income generated by the Volkswagen location will result in $55.7 million in annual tax revenues for Tennessee state and local governments." (page 3)

The City's sales tax revenue are flat, both prior to VW to present. The city ending the sales tax agreement with Ham. County has had more postive impact on city revenues, that all of the Pilot incentive industry combined.

3) "Tax revenue will increase by $1,399.4 million over the 30-year lifetime. Sales tax revenue is the largest source of additional taxes." (page 4)

The study assumed that the VW plant would be in full production for 30 years, the most shameful assumption.

Finally, Chattanooga's population growth is flat, so the sales and property tax assessments are proportionally flat. Chattanooga's growth is primarily due to annexation, census 2011 reports growth to 170,000 July 2011, from 155,000 in 2000.

Further, Chattanooga's poverty rate has climbed to 27 percent. This is the most telling sign to me. The Chamber PR machine in Chattanooga needs to stop being blatant liars to the public.

January 4, 2013 at 7:05 a.m.
aae1049 said...

While the Chamber of Commerce of Chattanooga proclaims their distaste for Unions, understand the Chamber is an elite union of rich corporations that are deeply in our tax dollars through many mechanisms.

You and I pay this list of rich corporations share of local taxes, and give them bond issue loan money. They pay no taxes, and market to make you believe this is good for you. Wake up!

Local taxpayers give the rotten Chamber of Commerce over $1.1 million dollars annually of our local property tax dollars. The Chamber is the biggest local welfare recipient in Hamilton County.

Get out of our property tax dollars!

January 4, 2013 at 11:59 a.m.
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