Kentucky Representative Jonathan Shell and Tennessee State Senator Mark Green joined Matt Walsh today to discuss their stops around Central Kentucky, Obamacare, and Dr. Green’s military involvement on the day of Saddam Hussein’s capture.
Click here to listen to the segment:
BELL BUCKLE, Tenn. – Any explosion can potentially cause damage, destruction and injury. We found one explosive on the market with so little regulation even a kid can buy it with no ID and no questions asked. These exploding targets are sold under lots of brand names, but Tannerite is the most popular. It’s sold as an exploding target for rifle practice. You can buy a canister, mix the ingredients, shake it up, shoot and it explodes. Tonight we take a look at why you should be concerned. The clips are all over YouTube.
People using explosives to create dramatic mushroom clouds, even blow up vehicles. The most popular brand of exploding target is Tannerite. The product consists of 2 stable powders. When combined they produce an explosive. It takes a high velocity weapon like a rifle to cause detonation. Here you’re seeing what happens when a commercially manufactured binary explosive like Tannerite is used.
We’re also showing you what happens when you use a homemade version of the same type of product. Domestic terrorist attacks like the Boston bombing explain why this is a growing concern for the ATF. We spoke by Skype to Tannerite spokesperson Dena Woerner, who downplays Tannerite’s dangers. Since the ingredients in Tannerite are not explosive until they’re combined, the product is not regulated by the ATF.
State Senator Mark Green (R-Clarksville) is a physician and healthcare administrator. Before private practice he was a decorated combat medic in the Army. His concern is that exploding targets can be purchased without age restrictions. Exploding targets give you big bang for your buck, but like any product, when misused or altered, the results can be dangerous and unpredictable.
It’s advice not everyone is taking. While exploding targets can legally be sold without a license, some cities around the country have passed laws regulating its use. We also found that some retailers have their own policy of not selling the product to anyone under age 18.
A little-known change to Tennessee law could limit options for the United Auto Workers labor union, which is working to unionize the Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga.
The law, signed by Gov. Bill Haslam in June 2011, specifies secret ballot elections are the preferred way to designate support for a union, rather than the so-called “card check” method that requires organizers to simply get a signature on a piece of paper, according to State Sen. Mark Green, R-Clarksville.
Under such circumstance, no alternative means of designation shall be used in Tennessee as convincing evidence of employee majority support, the law says.
Green, the vice chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, is calling for VW to follow the rule to allow workers a secret ballot election that he says would offer the same privacy for each worker as a political election.
Card checks, he said, leave workers open to intimidation, while secret ballot elections grant workers a moment behind the curtain to vote their conscience.
“You’ve got seven guys standing around you who work with you every day and they’re saying, ‘hey, sign this card,’” Green said. “We don’t elect the governor that way, we don’t elect our representatives that way, the ballot is secret. That’s democracy.”
But state legislators will have a hard time proving that Tennessee’s law carries more weight than the federal National Labor Relations Board, which oversees union activity in the U.S., said Gary Casteel, regional director for the United Auto Workers.
“I mean, you could have something in the state charter taking voting rights away from women, but you can’t do it because the federal law supersedes it,” Casteel said. “The NLRB, that’s the law of the land as far as labor law.”
Tennessee Attorney General Bob Cooper wrote an opinion in 2011 that the state statute does not conflict with federal law
and is constitutional, but took the position that the law only applies to situations in which a secret ballot election has already been selected, possibly rendering the text meaningless.
But it may not come to a battle between state lawmakers and the federal agency, if a report from Germany turns out to be accurate. According to Reuters, a “source with knowledge of the thinking of the company’s top executive board” said that the company will insist on a formal vote by the plant’s workers, rather than a card check.
That would make business interests happy because many believe that a secret ballot decreases the chances of the union being certified at the Chattanooga plant. Green himself says he personally knows four manufacturers that have decided to hold off on expanding in the Volunteer State until the union issue is put to rest at Volkswagen. Though he declined to name them, citing their fear of retaliation from the UAW, Green said one of the four is a billion-dollar company that “makes things that Tennesseans love.”
Casteel pushed back against charges that the UAW fears the secret ballot election, or that workers are being intimidated during the card check process, calling those assertions “laughable.”
“We never said we wouldn’t run an election,” he said. “We’re not scared to do it.”
He reversed the charges of intimidation, saying that, in fact, secret ballot election would give so-called “outside interests” a 40-day window to put up billboards and TV ads in an attempt to sway workers. Cards, he said, carry a self-explanatory message on them and are less disruptive.
“Most all of those cards are employee-to-employee generated,” Casteel said. “We’ve got only four organizers assigned to that project, and there are never more than a couple there at a time. We’ve not done one house call.”
Text of 2011 state law:
All employees and employers in this state, when seeking to designate an exclusive bargaining representative through an election permitted by state or federal law, have the right to make such designation by secret ballot, when secret ballot is permitted by such law; under such circumstance, no alternative means of designation shall be used in this state as convincing evidence of employee majority support.
Contact staff writer Ellis Smith, esmith@times freepress.com, or 423-757-6315
State Sen. Mark Green, R-Clarksville, only wanted to become a doctor when a sudden esophagus rupture nearly killed his father. The heroics of saving everyday people inspired him to pursue the stethoscoped career.
Decades later, he would be the surgeon responsible for monitoring Saddam Hussein after U.S. troops captured the ex-dictator on Dec. 13, 2003.
On Monday, the medic and senator spoke to Pachyderm Club members about his experiences behind both a scalpel and the barrel of a gun, including that fateful run-in with Iraq’s infamous dictator.
“Saddam was everything I thought he would be,” Green told the Republican crowd. “His megalomania was proven to me that night.”
Green noted how Hussein was dumbfounded at first — his hiding spot ambushed with three gun barrels pointed at his face — but the international figure gradually reasserted himself as a pompous, confident cult of personality after his capture. Green relied on a translator to address the Arabic-speaking prisoner of war, but Hussein’s body language spoke for itself.
“He had become very defiant, spitting on people and yelling at guys,” Green said. “But when I met with him, he sat up tall and stuck his chin out.”
Hussein even performed his Islamic prayer facing opposite from Mecca — a gesture tantamount to comparing oneself to God — to feed his own ego.
Green attended to Hussein with basic medical supervision such as taking his temperature and blood pressure, but soon couldn’t help but pick the ex-dictator’s brain about his life.
“I just start asking questions,” Green said. “Why did you go to war with Kuwait? Why did you go to war in Iraq?”
Hussein gave a variety of answers ranging from oil resource availability to border disputes, but one topic never came into discussion: his two sons.
“We killed Uday and Kusai,” Green said. “But he never asked about them. It’s a shame. Saddam Hussein sacrificed even his children for his own power.”
Green finished his discussion by rounding out talking points from the recent government shutdown to education analysis, but the anecdotes of treating such an iconic figure nearly 10 years ago resonated with his audience.
“This guy is really wonderful,” said former Hamilton County Commissioner Harold Coker. “He’s a great storyteller, and he’s got incredible credentials in terms of what he can do.”
Even as a former medical staff member of the Black Hawk Down unit, the health care company owner now in Green just wants to help people, even if that means telling a story or two along the way.
“Right now, I’m just focused on serving the people who sent me to Nashville,” he said.”
Contact staff writer Jeff LaFave at email@example.com or 423-757-6592.
Tennessee Senator Mark Green, MD, will speak at the Hamilton County Pachyderm Club on Monday October 21, 2013.
Senator Mark Green serves as the vice chairman of the Tn. Senate Commerce and Insurance Committee, is a member of the Tn. Senate Judiciary and Local Government Committees and represents the 22nd Senate District, home to the 101st Airborne Division of the U.S. Army.
“The Tennessee Legislature has worked to create a pro-growth, competitive business environment in our state that has protected our hard-working citizens from higher unemployment and an attack on the paycheck through excessive taxes,” said Senator Green. “I look forward to discussing key topics impacting our state at this moment, such as the impact of the Affordable Care Act, the financial stability of Tennessee in contrast to the federal government, and offer a preview on the legislation in the upcoming 2014 General Assembly.”
Dr. Green came to Tennessee as an army special operation flight surgeon assigned to the 160th Special Ops Aviation Regiment. There he planned and flew on some of the war on terror’s most covert operations. His most memorable mission was the capture of Saddam Hussein. Dr. Green interviewed Saddam for six hours on the night of his capture and wrote a book detailing the interview and his service with the military’s “Jedi Nights,” as he calls them. During this time he was selected as the Army Aviation Association Flight Surgeon of the year.
In his civilian life, Dr. Green is the president and CEO of Align MD, an emergency department staffing company based in Clarksville, Tn., which provides leadership, management and staffing to emergency departments in four southeastern states. Dr. Green founded the Align MD Foundation, which provides healthcare to underserved populations throughout the world.
The Hamilton County Pachyderm Club meets each Monday at the GOP headquarters at 1428 Chestnut Street, Suite E with additional parking available at Finley Stadium. Lunch is provided for $12 or interested citizens may attend for the program only.
Gov. Bill Haslam was in Dover on Monday, Sept. 23, to present a $400,000 facsimile grant check to the Town of Dover for a sewer rehab project.
DOVER, TENN. — Gov. Bill Haslam was in Dover on Monday, Sept. 23, to present a $400,000 facsimile grant check to the Town of Dover for a sewer rehab project.
According to City Administrator and Police Chief Kim Wallace, the proposed project will consist of repairing and replacing problem areas of sewer lines and manholes.
The grant was welcome news to town officials as well as to the town’s utility workers, especially considering the competitive nature of the Community Development Block Grant.
Dover will only have to come up with a $60,000 match, another plus for the project.
Some 1,375 residents, 85 percent of whom are low-income, will be served by the grant.
Close to 50 people filled the board room of the Town Hall for the announcement. Also on hand were 75th Dist. State Rep. Tim Wirgau and 22nd District State Sen. Mark Green, who supported the grant application. U.S. 7th District Rep. Marsha Blackburn also supported the grant.
Haslam made some prepared remarks, saying, “Community Development Block Grants help communities complete projects that will ultimately lay the groundwork for future economic development opportunities…I am happy to see Dover receive the assistance of CDBG funding to make necessary infrastructure improvements that will not only help the town, but also improve the quality of life for its residents.”
Wirgau and Green spoke briefly as well, complimenting town officials on their diligence in pursuing the grant.
Dover Mayor Lesa Fitzhugh was thrilled with what this will mean for the area.
“We have a wonderful town,” she said.
Haslam did not rush off from the event but stayed for a while and chatted with officials and residents alike, as did Wirgau and Green.
Funds for the grant were allocated under a procedure authorized by the Tennessee General Assembly that allows local recipients to prioritize their own needs.
CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – Senator Mark Green held an open Town Hall meeting Tuesday, September 17 at Civic Hall in Clarksville.
Green listed several issues he has been working on recently, including small business grants, funding for flood prevention in surrounding counties, privacy for citizens, the Wings of Liberty Museum, funding for the APSU farm, and funding for veterans who suffer from PTSD.
One of Senator Green’s biggest projects is a bill called ‘Come Back to Your Future’. With this legislation, any person who has dropped out of college at the halfway point will receive money to pay for half of the cost to finish their schooling, according to Green. “If you go halfway, we’ll meet you halfway,” he said. He hopes to pass the bill next year.
Surplus funds from the Hope Lottery Scholarship will be used toward this program. “It’s a one-time program, because we don’t want to incentivize people to drop out of school, but by doing this we can help the Governor in his Drive to 55.” Drive to 55 is Governor’s Haslam’s initiative to increase the number of college-educated Tennesseans to 55 percent.
After fielding questions and concerns from his constituents during the meeting, Senator Green feels the most pressing matter is that of Common Core. “It is perhaps the most emotional issue brought up tonight and everywhere I’ve gone,” he said. Common Core standards relate to public education and standardized testing. (Read more about Common Core standards in TN).
“I promise you there will be some kind of legislation on Common Core,” Senator Green said.
During the meeting, Green introduced a new facet of his website called ‘Votility’. This new feature allows constituents to view every bill he will vote on, and provide their personal opinions. Registered users can vote ‘yes’ or ‘no’ based on whether they think Green should support a particular bill. The site also allows users to submit personal commentary and view the entire text of each bill.
I’m writing about a personal experience that should encourage every local citizen to attend state Sen. Mark Green’s Town Hall meeting at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 17 at Civic Hall in Veteran’s Plaza in Clarksville.
Shortly after Sen. Green was elected last November, I learned that Tennessee was one of only 11 states that did not grant experienced military drivers an expedited Commercial Driver’s License. Some of these brave military drivers had operated trucks in combat zones over the past decade, but still needed to pass the Commercial Driver’s License training and test to drive commercial vehicles on the nation’s roadways.
When I told Sen. Green about this situation, he sponsored through the legislature a bill that Gov. Bill Haslam has signed into law correcting this situation. Thanks to Sen. Green, experienced military drivers who held a military license and have a clean civilian driving record no longer have to take the Commercial Driver’s License training and test to obtain a Commercial Driver’s License. If they were licensed to drive trucks in the military, they can now drive the same class of vehicle in civilian life. I know this new law helped one veteran transition into his chosen civilian position, and I know it will help hundreds of other returning military members make the transition to civilian life.
We’re lucky to have a state senator who listens to your ideas, recommendations and most importantly, who follows through with action. If our local citizens take advantage of Sen. Green’s Town Hall meeting to let him know your views and problems with government regulations, based on what I saw with the Commercial Driver’s License for veterans, I’m sure your ideas will be listened to.
ROBERT L. HUFFMAN
SENATOR GREEN URGES LOCAL ELEMENTARY TEACHERS TO ATTEND UPCOMING FINANCIAL LITERACY SUMMIT AT AUSTIN PEAY STATE UNIVERSITY
Contact: Darlene Schlicher (615) 741-6336 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
(NASHVILLE, Tenn.), September 10, 2013 – Tennessee teachers will have an opportunity to receive training in the state’s award winning “Financial Fitness for Life” curriculum on Saturday, September 21, 2013 at Austin Peay State University according to State Senator Mark Green (R-Clarksville). The free Tennessee Financial Literacy Teacher Summit will take place from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and includes a copy of the curriculum, lunch, and a certificate recognizing completion of the program.
A $50 Amazon gift card will be given to the first 100 registrants at WWW.TNFLC.ORG.
The Summit is conducted by the Tennessee Financial Literacy Commission and the State Treasury Department in conjunction with $mart Tennessee, a program of the University of Memphis.
“The goal of this curriculum is to teach children early how to make sound decisions about their financial choices,” said Senator Green. “In the long term, Tennessee should benefit, but more importantly is the positive effect this education will have on individual students and their families for decades to come. I encourage all local teachers to attend the Summit.”
Green said representatives from the Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System will also attend the Summit to answer pension and retirement questions. In addition, representatives from the Treasury Department will be there to discuss the state’s new college savings-529 plan, TNStars. The TNStars 529 Program is designed to make college savings easy by offering parents and other relatives a low-cost way to save for children’s college expenses with attractive investment options and special tax advantages.
“This Summit provides the perfect time for teachers to receive assistance in planning for their own financial future by having experts available to answer questions regarding retirement options,” added Green. “I am very encouraged that Treasurer Lillard and our Financial Literacy Commission are making this training available and hope that we have many local participants.”