Maybe it is just me, but I am beginning to get an uneasy feeling about Obama. I know he has a full plate, maybe several full plates, but I am looking for him to keep his word.

Unlike politicians we’ve had recently, in which their word was worthless, Obama was elected to stop all that. Now we are beginning to hear that it will take time to close down the infamous Gitmo Prison, that the economy is worse than at first expected, etc., etc.

Right. I get that. Gitmo can’t be shut down overnight. It might take a couple. You let those people go who have never been charged. Fit ’em with ankle bracelets if you must, but if this nation has not charged them with crimes of any nature, war or criminal, they should be returned to their countries of origin.

As for the economy, I was never for giving the bankers, the car dealers, the real estate moguls, the Wall Street firms access to my tax money. Why should we as a nation bail out those who put us in this fix? If you are going to use my tax money as my meager retirement dwindles to toothpick size, then let’s make sure we give it to the people who will get us out of the fix, and not take our money as a bonus pay just because they feel as if they need a bonus check.

I haven’t had a bonus check since I was a young reporter in Pensacola, Fla. The publisher gave us a turkey at Christmas time. That was nice, of course. You felt beholden, and like a plucked bird.

I still feel as if I’ve been plucked.


About tennwriter

FRED BROWN is a retired Senior Writer for The Knoxville News-Sentinel. He has been a journalist for 45 years and is a member of the Scripps Howard Hall of Fame. He is a recipient of the Malcolm Law Trophy for Feature Writing and in 1983 he was awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship in Journalism to study at the University of Michigan. He has published both fiction and nonfiction. Brown has a B. A. Degree in English Literature from Presbyterian College. Other highlights of his career include: Books and Stories Authored: Marking Time: East Tennessee Historical Markers and the Stories Behind Them, published by The University of Tennessee Press, Knoxville, Tenn. 2005. Discovering October Roads: Fall Colors and Geology in Rural East Tennessee, published by The University of Tennessee Press, Knoxville, Tenn., 2001. Co-authored with Harry Moore. The Serpent Handlers: Three Families and Their Faith, published by John F. Blair Publishers, Winston-Salem, N.C., May, 2000. Co-authored with his wife, Jeanne McDonald. Growing Up Southern: How the South Shapes Writers, published by Emerald House/Blue Ridge Publishing, Fall, 1997. Co-authored with his wife, Jeanne McDonald "We Can Eat Sparrows," New Millennium Writings, Vol. 1, Issue 2, Fall & Winter, 1996. "The Devil's Roost," Voices From the Valley, Knoxville Writer's Guild anthology, 1994. Snake-Handling Believers, 2 chapters in book by Dr. Thomas Burton, University of Tennessee Press, 1993. History of Commission on Religion in Appalachia, 1992-93. "Seniors: Telling Tales to Life's Upperclassmen," Storytelling Magazine, Vol. 4, No. 4, fall 1992. Coker Creek, Crossroads to History, history of a mountain community and its people near Tennessee-Georgia border, 1991. "Character Building," Storytelling Magazine, Vol. 3, No. 4, fall 1991. The Faces of East Tennessee, a history of East Tennessee Counties, 1990. "Tillman Cadle, Memories of the Coalfields," Now and Then, The Appalachian Magazine, Center for Appalachian Studies, East Tennessee State University, Vol. 7, No. 7, fall 1990. Trader Jon, a biography; Castle Books, Memphis, 1986. "Mining Reform," Sierra, Vol. 71, No. 5, September/October 1986.
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