Local TV and the ATLANTA JOURNAL CONSTITUTION spoke recently of an e-mail, possibly e-mails, from Sam Williams, the main person at The Atlanta Chamber Of Commerce, to the top person running Atlanta’s public schools. I thought that I’m so glad that The Chamber wants to support in the education of our children. In my usual naivete, I said it’s consoling to see the Chamber wanting to help our schools.

When I said those words I was with two gentlemen who keep up with schools and things. I don’t. My friend when he stopped laughing tried to enlighten me that Sam Williams’ communication had nothing to do with the well-being of our lame educational system. I said okay. Then I asked what was Sam doing. My friend said that he was not sure but Williams’ e-mail was giving directions to the superintendent concerning the Chamber’s business interests.

I have copies of e-mails between Sam Williams, former president of CAP and current CAP president, A. J. Robinson. Their communication began with Robinson’s asking Williams to find out what he could about the Baker Donelson Law Firm, how big, how many offices, Atlanta clients, etc.

A. J. Robinson under oath in his deposition in February said that he told Williams that this Baker Donelson firm was on the wrong side of the case of the Task Force v. The City of Atlanta. A. J. Robinson knows the Baker Donelson firm now. In that deposition he appeared to know more about Baker Donelson than he wished to know.

James Wilson Beaty
Jeremiah 22.16
August 24, 2010

I have seven children, all of whom I adore. One of my five sons has requested more of Uncle Ernest. Ernest’s older brother, James Davis Beaty, in October, 1970, published a 52 page mini-history of the Beaty clan that he called, A LITTLE GENEALOGY. In it he wrote of his parents and siblings and grandparents and friends and neighbors.

I tell my students that if they become famous novelists, the writings that they will cherish most will be those written about and for those that they love. I honor the memory of James Davis Beaty and the gift of his GENEALOGY. The following is quoted from page 48 of Uncle Jay’s little book remembering Ernest Beaty.

“Ernest graduated from Davidson in N. C. in the days when Davidson was very careful of the spiritual welfare of the students and every boy was required to attend service in the chapel each morning. If he missed more than a specific number of times, he was taken before the faculty. When Ernest entered the school he was very meticulous about attending chapel but he got tired of the routine and especially having to get up and out so early on winter mornings. After Christmas he decided he was going to quit going to chapel, so of course it was not long until he was called up before the faculty.

Now Ernest had only one hand, having been born with just a round nub at his left wrist. He was very adroit in keeping his deformity sealed and many people who knew him casually never suspected it.

When the faculty board asked what he had to say for himself about missing services, he got up and purposely let his deformed hand be visible – in fact, he made a few gestures with it. He asked the board if any of them had ever tried to tie a shoe with one hand, or tie a neck tie with one hand, or button a shirt with one hand and he reminded them that it just took him longer to dress than it did others, and since he would get to chapel late and did not want to disturb the exercises, he didn’t go in at all.

Ernest said it looked like the whole group was about to cry over his misfortune and how he was being punished because of his handicap. He thought he had won the case, but just then Dr. Sintell, who kept the chapel attendance records, said, ‘Mr. Beaty, how do you explain your being able to get to chapel without missing a single time from September to Christmas, but since Christmas you’ve missed more than you’ve attended. Did you not have this deformity until after Christmas?’

Ernest got back on his feet and said, ‘Gentlemen, I have been very careless in the preparation of my argument.’ As he sat down again, the whole group broke out in laughter. Ernest got off the hook that time and was dealt with gently. He said that after that he regularly honored the Lord with his presence at chapel.”

National Public Radio on August 13, 2010 reported the following paragraph,

“An estimated 30,000 individuals stood outside in sweltering heat earlier this week at the East Point Housing Authority, just outside Atlanta, to be placed on a waiting list for housing assistance. Local authorities were unprepared for the large crowd, which eventually grew impatient and resulted in a number of individuals needing medical attention. Journalist Corey Dade and Harvey Newman, a professor of Public Management and Policy at Georgia State University, talk about the dire housing shortage that left so many people desperate to get assistance.”

Michel Martin, the reporter on NP Radio noted that the scene in East Point brought to mind what we see these days after a natural disaster. I suggest what Martin saw in East Point is what follows an UNNATURAL disaster: national and local housing policies in the United States since the 1980’s. Democrats and Republicans have agreed on one thing: the government must get out of the housing business because poor Americans have no right to housing. I recall a Christian layman in a church where I once worshipped got in my face with his red face saying, “There is no such thing as a right to housing. You must work for a place to live. What are you, a Communist?”

Later I was able to point out to that Christian gentle that the largest “subsidy” in our nation’s budget is “the mortgage interest deduction” given to home owners. Renters don’t get it. People in shelters don’t get. Home owners get it. If I make a mortgage payment for where I live, I live in subsidized housing. That term did not sit well with my church friend who told me he worked for what he had. He wants poor people to get stable, independent before they join him in subsidized housing.

His logic reminds me of another churchman’s reasoning that holds that bailing out Chrysler and Harley-Davidson is solid fiscal responsibility. That will help the economy. He holds, on the contrary, that assisting a homeless mother with children is godless socialism. That will only help that irresponsible person to be more irresponsible. Besides she and her kids are a drain on the economy. He would assist the Czar in some tube tying.

Please remember that the Atlanta Task Force three years ago was in conversation with Mercy Housing Inc. considering additional mixed housing atop Peachtree-Pine. Officials at Mercy were talking of folding in an additional loan that would build housing and pay off the Task Force notes. CAP and Debi Starnes got wiind of this talk and intervened with collusion and tortious interference. Imagine a city that wanted to have mixed housing. Imagine a Housing Authority that would help, not hinder, safe, sanitary housing on Peachtree Street.

No way. One of my favorite of the hundreds of e-mails by Debi Starnes went to Renee Glover stating that Starnes and company had to have City Council and Atlanta Housing Authority support in order to stop any housing at Peachtree-Pine. That e-mail in discovery has Glover’s promise to help Starnes.

I feel for the 30,000 who stood for hours. God help them. Neither Debi Starnes nor Renee Glover will.

James Wilson Beaty, PhD
Jeremiah 22.16
August 21, 2010

I relish learning what famous persons think of each other, especially contemporaries and those of the same vocation. I know a bit of Charles Dickens, and I thrilled when I first read what he said after reading only a chapter of George Eliot’s ADAM BEDE. I wonder how well Christopher Marlowe knew William Shakespeare; I should know, but I do not. The contrasting personalities and beliefs of Thomas Jefferson and John Adams fascinate me.

I wonder about Samuel Johnson and Voltaire and their publishing books within weeks of each other with identical similarities, but they had never met.

In my oral exams, my friend and tormenter that day, the late Professor Bill Nolte asked me to describe the relationship between H. L. Mencken and Ernest Hemingway. Nolte knew that Hemingway was one of my 11 writers, 6 English, 5 American whom I was required to know.

I froze. I went blank. What brain I had left abandoned me. I had never read or heard of any relationship between Mencken and Hemingway. I took a leap with Nolte, a Mencken scholar, who could and would slice me to ribbons; I said I did not think the two men had had any relationship. Nolte’s inimitable smile preceded his comment, “I don’t know, either, Beaty, that there was a relationship.” To this day I do not know if these two great characters, Mencken and Hemingway, knew of or cared about for each other.

I wonder if Richard Nixon curbed his profanity when he spent time with Billy Graham. I would love to have heard the conversation between Ty Cobb and Shoeless Joe Jackson when Cobb bought whiskey from Joe in a South Carolina liquor store. I wonder why Czar Debi Starnes in her deposition reiterated four times that she had never met with A. J. Robinson ALONE. I’m fascinated by the actions of famous people.

Last century I read Karl Barth on Romans. I was privileged to be a student at the time at Columbia Theology Seminary. Of Barth, I understood at best one in five sentences. Prescious Professor Felix Gear reminded us freshmen students that we were “theological tadpoles.” I was at best a pre-tadpole. I did learn from the great Barth that his Christology placed Jesus of Nazareth at the center of the universe. That was my limited understanding. I embraced that comfort then; I embrace that comfort now; I will embrace that peace the day I go home. I had learned that comfort at my parents’ knees, and I relearned that peace in the words of Karl Barth.

Recently, I have read with delight and sadness the biographies, sermons, writings, essays of a man I have cited sparingly in my blogs. I place him along side Dr. King as the epitome of martyrdom in modern times. He, of course, is Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the Lutheran pastor whom Hitler murdered days before the Fuhrer died.

Eberhard Bethge, Bonhoeffer’s long-time friend gave us the gift of a 1048 page biography. Bethge records the first meeting of these two giants on page 176. I close this portion of my diary with Bethge’s words:

“On 23 July 1931 Barth invited him (Bonhoeffer) to dinner and conversation. At last the two were together. The younger man questioned, argued, and posed more questions, and found to his surprise that “Barth was even better than his books”;

“There is with him an openness, a readiness for any objection which should hit the mark, and along with such concentration and impetuous insistence on the point, whether it is made arrogantly or modestly, dogmatically or uncertainly, and not only when it serves his own theology.”

Like so many of Barth’s visitors, Bonhoeffer noted the striking interest Barth (“so hard to pin down in his books”) showed in his conversation partner. “I have been impressed even more by discussions with him than by his writings and his lectures. For he is really all there. I have never seen anything like it before.”

Note: Before this meering in Barth’s home, Bonhoeffer had attended one of Barth’s seminars. In that gathering the younger man by twenty years spoke out quoting Martin Luther, saying that the curses of the godless sometimes sound better to God’s ears than the hallelujahs of the pious. Delighted, Barth asked who had made this contribution to the discussion, and this was the beginning of their personal acquaintance.

James Wilson Beaty, PhD
Jeremiah 22.16
August 21, 2010

I make mistakes in my diary, my blog. I wrote in my August 13, 2010, diary entry entitled, “…Be Sure Not To Give At The Office,” that Mark O’Connell’s parting bonus as President of Atlanta United Way was $1,000,000. AJC Reporter Heather Vogell published on December 18, 2007, that Mark O’Connell in addition to the billions he raised for UW raised “a seven-figure retirement perk for himself nearly $1.6 million in cash.”

I was incorrect. I was wrong. I was nearly $600,000 LOW. I apologize to non-profit former United Way President Mark O’Connell. I apologize to the entire United Way TEAM GOLIATH family. I should have known that the sterling, caring organization, Atlanta United Way takes better care of its own than to say goodbye with a measly million. I apologize also to my readers for my mistake. I have an excuse.

You good attorneys at the Outhouse remember you can pledge to the Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless, Inc. through United Way. A one-line pledge will do it. And I thank you in advance. And Mark we would accept a drop of cold water from you. No one will ever know. I won’t tell anyone, not even Ratchet Rob “I’ll turn your water off” Hunter. My readers remember that Ratchet Rob heads the City of Atlanta’s Department of Water Mismanagement.

Incidentally my recent water bill at the house where I stay in the ghetto in Grant Park was $384.54. That was one month’s bill. I can be thankful that the previous one-month bill was only $225.76. Do you think Rob Hunter would gouge little ole me? I do make out my checks to the Department of Water Mismanagement. The City has been digging up the street around the ghetto for the last month replacing sewer lines. I’m happy to pay my share; however, I didn’t want to pay it ALL.

Luke 16.22-24
And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell he lifted up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.

In a recent blog I asked Jack Hardin to send Notip over to the Pine as it’s pretty warm over there these days, and we are in torments. Perhaps Notip could get really Biblical and dip the tip of his middle finger into a cup of cold water and touch our parched tongues. We are as Chris Allers reports “in torments.”

James Wilson Beaty, PhD
Jeremiah 22.16
August 19, 2010

My father’s older brother, Ernest Beaty, taught German and Latin for 25 years at Davidson College. Uncle Ernest told me once how bright were his students back in the old days. He proved his point by reporting the following event.

Having to miss class unexpectedly one morning, he left a note that read: “Professor Beaty’s classes are excused for the day.” My uncle told me that a bright scholar upon reading the note crossed out the C in the word Classes. An even brighter scholar followed by removing the l.

In those days such antics were frowned upon by most unless they had Uncle Ernest’s delightful sense of humor.

James Wilson Beaty,

The City Deposes Its Own

August 15, 2010

Can you imagine living the life of an attorney? If you can imagine such, then think of being an attorney for the City of Atlanta. Imagine being grilled by Atlanta City Council members, most of whom couldn’t find their you know whats with both of their you know whats. Fire drills at City Hall find the huge majority of those clowns wanting and still in the building long after the fire is out. And they ask their poor attorneys questions. I think Debi Starnes refers to them as “Law.” “Law” says this and “Law” rules that and so forth.

Imagine having to defend the antics of Debi Starnes. Imagine having to sit through depositions of Horace Sibley and A. J. Robinson and Richard Orr and having to parrot the words, “Object to form, Object to form.” The first 72 times I heard that expression in Robinson’s deposition, I had no idea what it meant. But when it was stated the 73rd time, I got it.

Former South Carolina Gamecock tight end Steve Riddell, so far is the Troutman Sanders lawyer representing Central Atlanta Progress’s conspirators against the homeless. Baker Donelson Attorney Steve Hall brilliantly twisted A. J. Robinson into tiny little knots. I’ve seen pretzels less tangled, not as knotted. With his back to his attorney, “Mystified” trembled for nearly five hours.

It took me awhile but I determined what triggered Riddell’s, “Object to form.” The lawyer did it whenever he might have thought, “Oh God I wish that bulldog hadn’t asked that question.” The second trigger came whenever the lawyer might have thought, “If Robinson answers that question, ‘He’s going to tell another lie.'”

Now, this week, the City attorneys bring to a deposition one of their own. They have subpoenaed John Bassett whose job is with the State. John Bassett is a nice enough man. W. H. Auden would love to portray, citizen John Bassett. He’s a safe, satisfied, business as usual, status quo bureaucrat. He’s one of Dante’s trimmers in Canto III of THE INFERNO. He works for the state. John Bassett would have been perfectly at home in Charles Dickens’ Office of Circumlocution.

I imagine John Bassett will answer, “Yes,” 100 times to the City’s questions showing what a despicable place is Peachtree Pine and how inadequately it is run and how dirty are the window sills that Chris Allers checks for grime and grit and soot and shit and those nasty ole bugs. Bassett will have to agree with Starnes’ assessment of “ABYSMAL” where live those dirty ole bugs.

Whenever the City rejects funding to a particular agency, a letter goes out from the mayor’s office to DCA, the state’s Department of Community Affairs Then those cutting-edge folks write to the agency dutifully reporting Starnes’ wishes, “no money” this year.

John Bassett is the lucky light at DCA who signed the letter three years in a row notifying the Task Force that their funding for those years was zero. Starnes and Orr and Sibley and the suspect Tri-Jurisdictional Continuum of Care rigged those cuts for all three years.

As sure as the broom flies over the Hurt Building, Bassett will be deposed Friday, August 20, 2010. Please remember that Baker Donelson Attorney Steve Hall will be present to question John Bassett. I wish you could watch Steve Hall work. He ties these charlatans into knots. This metaphor describes perfectly the tangled web this brilliant attorney spins. If fifty feet of rope bound and gaged Hall’s witnesses, their entanglement would not be more secure.

Steve Hall reduced Debi Starnes, Horace Sibley, Richard Orr and A. J. Robinson in that order to weak snuffling. He pinched their feeble tapers.

Bassett’s deposition is set for Friday; that can change. The City’s barristers read this blog. God bless them. They have a harrowing task: just look at the people they have to defend.

Good night, TEAM GOLIATH! MENE, MENE, TEKEL and PARSIN. God has numbered your days. You have been weighed in the balances and found wanting. You are divided and delivered. Good night, Buttercup!

James Wilson Beaty, PhD
Jeremiah 22.16
August 15, 2010