Mayor Andy Ogles Speaks at Town Hall Style Meeting in Leipers Fork with Hundreds of Concerned Conservatives

Mayor Andy Ogles Speaks at Town Hall Style Meeting in Leipers Fork with Hundreds of Concerned Conservatives

 

Live from Music Row Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles in the studio who talked about his town hall style meeting with 100 conservatives in Leipers Fork Monday evening.

Leahy: We are joined in studio by our good friend, the mayor of Maury County Andy Ogles. Every time you come in, Andy, I learn something new. Here’s what you told me during the break. And I suppose you could say I am slack-jawed to hear this.

Ogles: Amen. (Chuckles)

Leahy: It turns out there are conservatives in Leipers Fork, in Middle Tennessee, in Williamson County. That is surprising to me.

Ogles: Last night we had our County Commission meeting, so I was there for that.

Leahy: Last night Maury County has a commission meeting and as the Mayor, you’re there. I’ve only been to one County Commission meeting ever. Williamson County. Let me just say it dragged on. It dragged on. And on.

Ogles: We’ve got a good group of folks on our county commission, and it was a committee meeting, and it was, well, run and lasted about an hour.

Leahy: Really? Just an hour?

Ogles: Just an hour.

Leahy: I think other county commissions need to go down to Maury County and learn how to run a meeting in one hour.

Ogles: Well, there wasn’t a lot on the agenda. It’s budget season in the state of Tennessee for all your counties. And so that’s really the focus, I think, for a lot of county seats.

Leahy: So this was last night.

Ogles: And last minute I was invited to this conservative meeting in Leipers Fork.

Leahy: Hold on just a minute. (Laughter) I’m still a little bit astonished here. A conservative meeting in Leipers Fork? I love Leipers Fork. It’s a great community. We go up there and go to the galleries and go to the restaurants and just hang out.

It’s a wonderful community. But conservative, it’s not a word and it’s not an adjective that would come to mind when you say Leipers Fork.

Ogles: It’s known for its kind of arts, a lot of musicians up there. But I think in most cycles, and of course, I’m just speaking generically I think most people in Leipers Fork would consider themselves independents, conservative, maybe fiscally conservative, and probably a little more moderate on some of the social issues.

But there’s something happening. So I’m invited to speak across the state because I’ve been so outspoken, not just on COVID, but CRT.

Leahy: Because under your leadership, Maury County is a bastion of freedom.

Ogles: Bastion of freedom. Welcome to America.

Leahy: Welcome to America and freedom. (Laughs) What time do you get an impromptu call? What time does the call come in?

Ogles: It was literally 2:30 p.m. to get involved and say, hey, we’re going to have an event.

Leahy: If I get a call like that, by the way, I go out of curiosity just to say there are conservatives in Leipers Fork. What time do you finish your committee meeting?

Ogles: We finished right at 5:30 p.m. in Columbia. Hopped in the car to go to Leipers Fork.

Leahy: That’s a pretty drive, isn’t it?

Ogles: It’s beautiful back roads.

Leahy: I went out to dinner last night and I came back driving through Williamson County, and I’m looking at it, and I’m saying it’s gonna be one of the most beautiful places in the world. It’s just gorgeous.

Ogles: Tennessee in general is a special place. I’m biased of course. I grew up here. My family has been here forever.

Leahy: But I actively made the choice to move here, right? Because I must confess, I am a Yankee by birth. But I chose to be a Tennesseean 30 plus years ago.

Ogles: You were talking about moving here. I was in the middle of a rant, and I made some kind of derogatory comment about California. And then I paused for a moment. It’s like, okay, I’m sorry.

Leahy: How many people were there?

Ogles: About 100.

Leahy: 100 conservatives in Leiper Fork?

Ogles: Yes.

Leahy: Wow! Now, where was it?

Ogles: Puckett’s.

Leahy: I love that place. What a great place.

Ogles: It was standing room only. Some great folks were there.

Leahy: Who organized this and what do they call themselves and when did they get organized?

Ogles: You know, I don’t know the name of the group. (Leahy laughs) They asked do you want to come and say a few words? And I did. It was more than a few words. I had that last spot. So I was the quasi-keynote.

But we talked about a lot of things, Critical Race Theory, and election integrity, and everything that’s going on in this country. And so whether I’m speaking in Pulaski or Knoxville or like last night, Leipers Fork.

Texas to Pennsylvania to Tennessee, there’s a red wave I think about to hit this country. And I think you see that manifest itself last night in Leipers Fork that otherwise folks who are fairly well off, they’re not overtly politically engaged came out on a Monday evening to hear a Conservative speak, and they are ticked off. Let me tell you. And I’ve got a funny story if you want to hear it.

Leahy: Andy, you always have a funny story.  Now, I’ve heard this story a little bit. But it’s really very funny. Tell us the story.

Ogles: I love the town hall-style. Sorry about that. So do the intro hit some hot button issues, kind of talk about the winds of the legislative session and the half measures. And by the way, Tennessee compared to Florida, we were a state of half measures, and we can talk about that or talk about it another time.

So I did Q and A and I’m taking questions. And it’s the 15th or 20th question. It’s time to kind of close this thing.

Leahy: It’s the end of the evening.

Ogles: This thing has gone on.

Leahy: There were 100 people there.

Ogles: Two hours at Puckett’s. We’re hitting the two-hour mark and it’s time to close it out.

Leahy: And you have to get up very early in the morning to come and be on our program.

Ogles: Yeah, I’m tired today, man. I’m energetic. And there’s a Lady with long blonde hair in the back. And I’d seen her a couple of times raising her hand. And I was like, yes, ma’am, in the back. And she says, well, I may be from California, but I’m not a she. I’m a man. Long blonde hair.

Leahy: Long blonde hair!

Ogles: Lights are in my eyes. But the funny thing was, if you remember the rock band, the Nelsons, the Nelson twins. Well, it was Gunner Nelson. He was there and had a question, but I totally just called him a woman.

It was hilarious. The crowd erupted, and I just so happened to be wearing my glasses. And so I took them off and I just said, apparently, I need an eye doctor. But he was very gracious. And afterwards I went up to him and spoke.

And we’re going to be doing this kind of this freedom tour coming up across the state talking about these important issues. And this group was fired up to hear more about it and to be a part of it.

Leahy: So Gunner Nelson, his dad, of course, was the great Ricky Nelson. His grandparents Ozzie and Harriet. A great television program. And he and his twin brother had quite a success in the early 1990s with the band Nelson.

They had the long blonde hair that was sort of their trademark. They’re pretty good musically. They’ve moved from California to Tennessee, apparently.

Ogles: Super nice. Both brothers were there. One of their wives were there and just great family. I felt so bad because again, I couldn’t see because they were at the back of the room. The lights were in my eyes, and I just saw long blond hair.

And I’m just thinking, okay, yes, ma’am. And he says, I’m not a ma’am. But what are you going to do? You just roll with it and self deprecating and just be honest about it. I’m sorry. But a great guy and a Conservative.

Leahy: He’s a conservative.

Ogles: And they may not want me to say that.

Leahy: It’s out! It’s out! But there are so many people that are moving here.

Ogles: But I tell you, there’s this surge in Tennessee. People want to get involved.

Leahy: I think you’re exactly right. There is a surge in Tennessee and other parts of the country.

Listen to the full second hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Leipers Fork” by Michael Gaylard CC 2.0.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mayor Andy Ogles on Moving Past COVID with Trace Adkins and MuleFest

Mayor Andy Ogles on Moving Past COVID with Trace Adkins and MuleFest

 

Live from Music Row Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles in the studio who detailed the upcoming performance by Trace Adkins at MuleFest and moving on from COVID.

Leahy: In studio, our very good friend, the mayor of that bastion of freedom, Maury County, Andy Ogles. This is my fault because it’s just so much fun talking to you but we got a little bit off track.

We are going to start at 6:05 talking about MuleFest, and we’ve talked about it on the edges. But now let’s really talk about exactly what’s going to be happening this Friday down at the square in Columbia. Tell us everything about MuleFest.

Ogles: MuleFest is a music festival taking place in Maury County this weekend. It’s hard to believe that it’s here. But Friday and Saturday, we’ve got three stages, a couple of dozen bands.

It starts at 6 p.m. on Friday evening, and we’ll run till about 10:30 Friday night. We have a couple of hundred vendors, food vendors, crafts. I mean, it’s going to be amazing. You’ll be able to get a wristband for those who want to partake of some of the artisan beers and brews that we have.

And you’ll be able to walk around from the various stages. And then Saturday morning, we have a parade at 11 o’clock. The stages fire back up at 10 a.m. in the morning and run until four o’clock in the afternoon.

And then in the evening, all of the restaurants and the breweries and such, they all have live music as well. On Saturday you’ll be able to come starting at 10 in the morning until about 10, 11 o’clock at night and hear live music.

And you’ll have a dozen different choices as to what you might want to listen to. And, of course, the main event is Trace Adkins. He’s performing Friday evening. It’ll be huge. I’m expecting a tremendous crowd.

And then Saturday, he’s the Grand Marshal in the parade. It’s a lot of fun and a huge event. The community is pumped and our small businesses. It’s been a tough year. And this is a way to just kind of spike the football, if you will, to say, hey, we’re moving past COVID.

We’re opening our economy. Keep in mind, Maury County never shut down, but we’re ready to come together as a community and celebrate. Memorial Day is about our veterans in particular it’s about those who have fallen in service to the country.

We’ll have some time there in the middle where we will have a service to honor those who have fallen serving this great country that we have.

Leahy: Trace Adkins is at what time?

Ogles: We’ll do the ceremony for our veterans around 7:55-8  o’clock. And then he’ll be right after right after that.

Leahy: And that’s just around sunset, right?

Ogles: That’s right.

Leahy: You got all the lights in the stages set up.

Ogles: Oh, yeah. It’s going to be amazing. And this is a full production. And when we first started talking about this and planning it. I was thinking maybe scale down an acoustic type of set, but they literally bring in a tractor-trailer that’s a stage. And then on either side of the stage, there’s these, like, 10 by 22 TVs.

Leahy: Really?

Ogles: Real monitors on either side.

Leahy: This is going to be something.

Ogles: This is big.

Leahy: So it seems to me, though, that this is the kind of stuff that people in the support people in the music industry have done for years and years and years are very good at it. They really haven’t been able to do it during COVID. But now I think in a way, this is a signal to the entire country live performances are back.

Ogles: When you look at some of the unintended consequences of the shutdowns and the closures, et cetera the entertainment industry has been decimated.

Leahy: Absolutely.

Ogles: Obviously, you have your big stars. They make a lot of money and have a lot of money. But you have all these layers of folks that put on these productions, from the person that rents the speakers to the guy that loads them into the back of the van, to the people that are working the concert, and everything in between.

All of that support staff, they’ve been out of work for a year. But you’re starting to see some of your more outspoken performers, like Trace and others, are getting back on the road. A lot of states have started to lift the restrictions.

They can kind of go out there, and you have now opportunities for them to perform in a stadium safely, et cetera, and put people back to work.

Leahy: And the key to all this, I think from a public health perspective, has been the widespread availability of vaccines.

Ogles: Oh, sure. Even Maury County, I refused to shut everything down. Last year, most of your county fairs, state fairs, were canceled. We had ours. That was during the summer peak. That was during September. It was an outdoor event.

There were no vaccines at the time, but with social distance, and we had hand sanitizer. And the Tennessee Department of Health said it was not a spread event. Now you had the CDC coming out and saying, oh, by the way, your chance of getting covet and an outdoor event is, like less than one percent.

And that’s basically if someone sneezes in your face. It’s one of those things that the data was there back in September when I made that decision. But the media got in the way of the truth. And the economic consequences are immeasurable.

Leahy: Absolutely. Well, here’s the thing, Andy. You use common sense and you look at the data. You are unusual for a political leader today because they all seem to be following the wind of whatever Dr. Fauci is saying at that moment in time.

Ogles: As a county mayor, I’m very active. I’m very accessible. I think I told this story before when we knew COVID was coming. It was jumped upon and then you have cases in Washington and New York, and it’s going to spread through the states.

And so you’re anticipating that first case in Tennessee or that first case in your community. And ultimately, when I made the decision to work with the Superintendent to close schools because ‘it was here.’ That evening, I went to the grocery store.

So up into that point, everything had been normal in Middle Tennessee and Maury County. So I held a press conference, and we announced that we were going to close schools and for the remainder of the year because, again, of the unknowns.

Everybody was terrified in March and April if you think back to the beginning of COVID. So that evening, I went to Kroger Walmart and all this, and it was sheer panic, literally had people just grabbing armfuls of cans and cereal, having no idea what they just picked up.

And we’re dropping it in buggies. I remember Walmart distinctly that I looked at the meat department. There were like three packages of liver on the far end. And that was it. That’s the only meat that Walmart had.

People were scared. But the data started coming in very quickly from Europe, out of Asia, not China, but out of Japan and South Korea. But the media doubled down on Fauci and they doubled down on fear, and they doubled down on just hyping this thing up.

And you hate to veer off into the conspiracy, but they had an intent to affect an election. And they did.

Leahy: Yeah, they sure did.

Ogles: Whether you believe it was stolen or not, that’s a conversation for another day. But there’s no denying that what the media did during COVID and they’re guilty, guilty as charged had an effect on the election.

Leahy: Yeah, no question about that. But now it’s May of 2021.

Ogles: And MuleFest!

Leahy: Not March 22.

Ogles: And it’s MuleFest.

Leahy: And so old Trace is ready to give an outstanding and energetic life performance Friday night, about eight o’clock.

Ogles: What’s great about Trace is he’s just a great American. And I’m not just saying that to promote the event, I’ve gotten to know him. And so even during some of this shutdown, and there weren’t a lot of venues to perform at, he was still going around to bases and performing for soldiers just because he loves our country, and he loves our troops.

So you may not be a country music fan or even a Trace fan, but if you want to come to support just someone who loves this country, believes in Liberty and freedom he’s the guy to get behind because his actions reflect what he believes and he supports our troops.

Leahy: Now, this about Trace, I did not realize this, but he’s actually done quite a bit of acting as well. He was in The Lincoln Lawyer, the Michael Connelly thriller in 2011.

Ogles: And then he has a TV show on Paramount or one of the cable networks. I think they’re looking at another season. So he’s getting some TV time.

Leahy: Very interesting. Plus, he can sing like the dickens.

Ogles: Well, he’s a great entertainer. And again, he’s a big dude. He’s a big personality. He’s got a big heart.

Leahy: He’s America! He’s American.

Ogles: He’s fun to be around. I’m so excited about the concert.

Leahy: I am, too, because Let’s get out of this COVID craziness. Let’s have some fun!

Ogles: I think for a lot of people, this is going to be one of those moments when they’re just a big sigh of relief.

Listen to the full second hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roger Simon and Andy Ogles Discuss the Immense Power of Facebook

Roger Simon and Andy Ogles Discuss the Immense Power of Facebook

 

Live from Music Row Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles in the studio to discuss the Project Veritas Facebook whistleblower and the companies power as larger than many nations.

Leahy: All-star panelist, Roger Simon, Sr. Editor-at-Large with The Epoch Times and our good friend Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles. Andy, breaking story eight hours ago, James O’Keefe with Project Veritas, released documents and audio from Facebook. They’re going to start censoring people for vaccine hesitancy. Can you believe that?

Ogles: If you look at what Florida’s done in the bill that they’ve passed, this is akin to this social score.

Simon: In China.

Ogles: So to back up just a moment, Florida has a state legislator down there who came up with this tech censorship bill.

Leahy: Randy Fine. He’s been on our show. Great guy.

Ogles: Yes. And so I’m a fellow with Club for Growth. He is as well.

Leahy: Great minds think alike.

Ogles: Well, I guess, but it was one of those that we were seeing this coming. And so I reached out to the governor, the lieutenant governor, and the Speaker of the House. I sent them this legislation.

I implored them to do the same thing in the state of Tennessee. And they balked. And now we have a situation where you’ve got James O’Keefe unveiling and having actual proof that what we were warning people about is happening.

Simon: I can tell you why they balked. And that’s really horrible. The reason they balked is so many of our politicians are being fed money by Facebook and everybody.

Ogles: We recruited Facebook to come here.

Simon: So they’re bought and paid for, and we’re all headed to be Communist Chinese, not good Chinese. So it’s a very bad situation. And the governor ought to straighten up and fly right as the song goes.

Leahy: So here’s the actual quote. Based on the vaccine hesitancy score, we will demote or leave the comment alone one whistleblower at Facebook said.’ Unbelievable. So if you have a good vaccine, hesitancy score that is that you’re not hesitant to take the vaccine they’ll leave it alone.

Simon: That’s right.

Leahy: Like Senator Rand Paul. Senator Rand Paul has made the personal decision that he’s not going to take the vaccine. And so they will demote any of his comments at Facebook using this algorithm.

Ogles: Well, I think a lot of us suspected that Facebook was doing this, but now you have quantifiable proof that they are doing it. And again, either the fact that as in China that we’re being assigned a number, a score, and it is ranking our worthiness to be on their platform.

And some might say that this tech censorship bill smacks into the freedom of freedom of speech from the business perspective, but we’ve stepped in with antitrust laws to break up this type of behavior.

Leahy: Let me get the exact quote so you know exactly what happened. Fox News last night. ‘Investigative journalist James O’Keefe reacted on Hannity Monday to exclusive documents and interviews that were provided to his Project Veritas organization by two Facebook whistleblowers that purport to show the social media giant is using an algorithm to target users who disseminate messaging that runs counter to the company’s political ideology.’

O’Keefe told Hannity that Facebook initiated a beta test for the algorithm that classifies some users under two incremental tiers of what they dub vaccine hesitancy or your VH score without the user’s knowledge.

Based on that VH score, we will demote or leave the comment alone, depending upon the content within the comment. That’s what the Whistleblower said. Roger?

Simon: Speaking to what Andy said, a lot of people consider themselves a libertarian or conservative, complaining we shouldn’t be messing with private corporations. They are able to do what they want.

But no one ever conceived of private corporations like Facebook and Google Alphabet in the days that this kind of legislation was written. They are more powerful than 95 percent of nations. I would say they’re more powerful in every nation, but the USA in China.

Leahy: Roger, what’s your VH score? Has Facebook given you your score?

Simon: I’ll tell you, I’m going to be honest about it. I actually took the vaccine, and the reason I took the vaccine is I travel for work all the time and was afraid they wouldn’t let me on planes. And now I’m saying, well, I was a chicken and I did it, but my reason for doing it is probably accurate.

Leahy: Well, now I’ve taken the vaccines. My personal thing is I’m 66. I’m in that zone. The danger zone, if you will.

Simon: You’re looking good.

Leahy: My inner 46 says thank you, Roger, for that. And I looked at the evidence, and to me, there’s enough evidence to say, okay, well, it’s not going to hurt me, and it’s going to help me.

That was my personal choice, Senator Rand Paul, different choice. If you’re pregnant, if you’re a woman and pregnant, you may have a different choice.

Ogles: Well, I’m in the Rand Paul camp. I’ve not gotten the vaccine. I have no intentions of getting the vaccine. And that’s my choice.

Leahy: That’s your choice, because I don’t know your personal circumstances.

Ogles: That’s right.

Leahy: That’s for you to decide. Not for me, not for Roger and certainly not Facebook.

Simon: Well, you know, I feel sorry for it, because he won’t be able to go to Paris next year. But maybe he doesn’t want to go to Paris.

Leahy: Let me correct that. He may be able to go to Paris, Tennessee.

Ogles: Well, and let me tell you, over the next year, I plan on visiting Paris and lots of places in Tennessee, so it’s going to be a busy keep you busy.

Leahy: That’s good. But, look, this is very dangerous, very dangerous. And I do think here’s a bit of the problem. We have antitrust laws that could be used by the Department of Justice, but Merrick Garland isn’t going to use them. Nor, by the way, did Bill Barr.

Simon: No.

Leahy: A big disappointment.

Simon: H.L. Mencken again, it’s about the money.

Leahy: It is about the money.

Simon: I mean, that’s the scary part about it. People are so easily bought.

Ogles: Well, when going back to that quote and this VH score, what’s frightening about this or concerning is that this is a beta test of an algorithm that is going to be applied in a much broader use and broader function.

Simon: Or has been already.

Leahy: We don’t know.

Ogles: And so, again, this is just the tip of the iceberg. And again, that is why I begged the governor. I held a press conference. I sent a letter. I sent the actual piece of legislation that Florida passed and said, we’ve got to do this in Tennessee to protect freedom of speech and I got crickets.

I got nothing in response. And here we are, now we have the proof. And I hate to say it, but I told you so we saw this coming. And once again, we’ve done nothing about it.

Leahy: And that is, I think, a little bit of the problem here in Tennessee.

Simon: A little bit? It’s the biggest problem that may be facing America in the next 50 years.

Leahy: But in particular in Tennessee because Maury County in Tennessee, where our friend Andy Ogles is the Mayor there.

Simon: The one Tennessee free zone.

Leahy: It’s a bastion of freedom.

Simon: Tennessee should be a bastion of freedom. I mean, it’s one of the that’s interesting about it is being an immigrant here from California for three years now duration. I came thinking it was going to be pure red.

And actually, it’s one of the reddest states, and at the same time, the government is not as red as the people. It’s very weird situation that we have, whereas in Florida, the government seems to be more red than the people. I mean, we should be out front on these things rather than lagging behind.

Ogles: You look at the lawsuit in Texas not to get us off of this vaccine score thing from Facebook because it’s so important and it needs to be discussed, and we need to be shouting from the rooftops.

But that lawsuit against the government on election integrity. Tennessee, by the time we signed on to the amicus brief, we were like 16th or 17th, the decision had been made. The outcome was predetermined. So, again, we were following instead of leading. And we’re one of the reddest states in the country.

Simon: The politicians here should be in the front because they have nothing to lose. They got the people behind them.

Listen to the full second hour here:


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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Andrew Ogles” by Andrew Ogles and photo “Roger Simon” by Roger Simon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles on Corporate Wokeness and How Tennessee Needs to Follow Florida’s Lead

Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles on Corporate Wokeness and How Tennessee Needs to Follow Florida’s Lead

 

Live from Music Row Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles in the studio to talk about the corporate wokeness and its disregard for their constituency and how other states need to act now and follow Florida’s lead.

Leahy: You are a small business guy. I think Alfredo Ortiz made quite a case there. (Laughter) It was kind of funny right?

Ogles: Oh, my goodness. As we sit here and talk about this billboard, I was trying to think of a funny quip. I’m usually pretty good at that. And I’m speechless. Sometimes we say things in jest and we lighten them up a little bit. But he’s really talking about something serious that wokeness that is sweeping the country. It has a dangerous, ugly side to it in that it’s ready, fire, aim. And we’re no longer processing things through an objective lens. That suddenly everything’s tainted.

And that’s problematic. Could have should have the All-Star Game been evaluated? Well, of course, that’s what you do in any business model. But just to pull it a knee-jerk reaction because of Coca-Cola and Delta, these woke corporations trying to push. They’ve become oligarchs now where they are pushing their agendas onto the American public. But because they have such a market share we don’t have a voice.

Leahy: It’s a very good point. When we grew up, the idea was, well, this is a capitalist society. And businesses were in business to make a financial return for their shareholders and do a good job in providing products and services to their customers. That’s the model that’s being replaced now by a concept called stakeholder capitalism.

I call it basically an early version of Marxism. What’s happening is these large publicly traded companies, the left is trying to turn them into, like, public benefit corporations. And they are making decisions not based upon their products or services or what their customers need but what the left activists are trying to push them into. It’s a very bad sign.

Ogles: And the problem is that most of us we’re busy with jobs, mortgages, and kids and we’re trying to figure out life. And then you’ve got this minority, this small portion of the left. They’re loud, they’re angry, and it terrifies these corporations. And so they’re moving in directions that their constituency really doesn’t want.

Leahy: Their customers don’t want, their investors don’t want. But these stakeholders are basically a bunch of left-wing Marxist types that want a version of neofascism in the United States. There’s a lot of words but that I think describes what they’re trying to do. They’re trying to serve the authority of state legislatures around the country.

Ogles: Yeah. They totally bypass. For example, the Tennessee legislature, they’re not going to do some of the things that Coke or Delta or some of these other companies are suggesting. And so what are they doing? It’s a run around you and I, as we try to say, hey, wait a minute. We value the Constitution. We’re governed by elected people, not by corporations.

And because you’re Coca-Cola and you have such a large market share, now you have a disproportionate voice and telling me how to live. Look, I don’t care what Coke thinks. I really don’t. Make soda, do it well, and be gone. That’s it.

Leahy: Yeah. I think I’m going to stop drinking Woka-Cola myself.

Ogles: Woka-Cola. That’s almost as good as that billboard.

Leahy: All strikes and no balls for the Major League Baseball Commissioner. The thing is, when you look at that, you look at the social course, as you know, 2nd Vote, our friends Amy Wilhite and Chris McCarran are the executive director and CEO of 2nd Vote. They rate large corporations based upon whether they’re neutral or conservative or liberal.

The vast majority of large corporations now are pretty liberal in terms of their policies, and it’s just not what they should be doing. And people are pushing back now when you talk about as a consumer, you look at that. If I tell you I’m not going to drink Woka-Cola, okay. If you like to drink Colas, there are a few less woke versions of it. Pepsi-Cola is sort of in that crowd, not quite as bad as Woka-Cola. Royal Crown Cola.

These are all kind of politically correct. There is this thing going on in American capitalism, and you’re a student of economics Andy. There’s a thing going on where all of these big funds that manage all the money that invest in corporations are pushing the publicly traded companies to do something called ESG. And it’s a big code word. It’s for the environment and social governance. In other words climate change and equity, diversity, all that kind of stuff. And there’s huge pressure on these publicly traded corporations to kind of comply. Not a good sign, I don’t think.

Ogles: No. And that’s why it’s imperative that our state legislators and the legislature step up and do something about this. You had Senator Mike Bell in the first segment, and there’s the opportunity to follow Florida’s lead and to push back against some of this Big Tech censorship, kind of draw a line in the sand if you will. And they’re going to study it for another session.

Well, the time is now to act. And so I would call on the legislature to go ahead. I sent a letter to the governor, the speaker of the house, and to the lieutenant governor saying, we have to stand up collectively as a state in the same way Florida has done. And that’s the other thing that’s important is we need these legislatures, these governors from conservative states to work together to be a chorus of conservatism because that’s what the left does. And they do so well.

You’ll have these factions of the left that otherwise would never want to be together because they’re so distinctly different. But yet when it comes to fighting against conservatism, they are one voice and they move and they march together. And then you get here on the conservative side, we’re too busy bickering as to which one of us is the most conservative.

Leahy: I’m more conservative than you.

Ogles: That’s right. Ron DeSantis is out there getting it done. And in Tennessee and Texas and some of the other states. We’re a little tepid.

Leahy: Lagging behind.

Ogles: That’s right. You look at the election, the lawsuit that the Texas attorney general filed. Tennessee, we finally signed on, but we were like 16th out of 17th by the time that we signed on. It was so far in the process, it was irrelevant. We should have been tagalong beating on the door to say, no, we’re next. We’re next. We’re going to file, too. So that way, if your lawsuit doesn’t work and we have one. And so we as a state, as elected officials, we’ve got to work together and be a chorus of rationalism in a crazy world.

Leahy: You said something very interesting and very important. There is leadership, I think, going on in the conservative world, and it’s coming from the state government. But particularly there’s one state I think that’s leading the way. And there’s one governor who’s leading the way and that’s Ron DeSantis in Florida.

Ogles: Going back to the baseball analogy, he’s knocking it out of the park. I mean, he really is. I mean, if you’re a conservative in this country, man, do you wish you had Ron DeSantis as your governor or perhaps as your president.

Leahy: Now you use the baseball term. You know, the story about Ron DeSantis?

Ogles: He’s quite the ballplayer. From Yale?

Leahy: He was the captain of the Yale baseball team and hit 345 his senior year. I never even in high school, I never even got close to 345. So this guy’s pretty good. He’s a very talented guy. And that’s one of the reasons I think since last you’ve been here, we have a little bit of news. The Tennessee Star and our parent corporation is Star News Digital Media. And we have the Star News Network. We do state-based conservative news in now seven States. And we have added, wait for it….drum roll, please. The Florida Capital Star.

Ogles: There you go.

Leahy: Up next, The Texas Loan Star.

Ogles: That’s a good one. Again, if you’re a conservative publication, the state that’s really helping drive conservative content is Florida. So it makes absolute sense to have something like that there. But again, they are leading the charge, knocking out of the park as I said.

Leahy: That was our thinking as well. And so far, the stories that have been great about conservative leadership from a governor and a state legislature down in Florida.

Listen to the full broadcast here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles on Corporate Wokeness and How Tennessee Needs to Follow Florida’s Lead

Mayor of Maury County Andy Ogles Talks About County Growth, Conservative California Refugee’s, and Being Accessible

 

Live from Music Row Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles in the studio to talk about the growth in his county and being accessible to the community and new California conservative refugees.

Leahy: In studio with us, our good friend, Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles. Andy, Maury County is experiencing huge growth. This is good. And this is problematic as well.

Ogles: Right.

Leahy: In the past month, I guess since you were here last, here’s what I’m noticing. I’m noticing, at least in Nashville and in Williamson County, maybe it’s the good weather, but I’m noticing that real estate houses are going very fast A. And B, I’m hearing from Realtors that the asking price is not what the closing cost is. That people are bidding these things up by five to 10 percent. At least that’s what I’m hearing in Nashville and in Williamson County. And the reason is California money. That’s what I’m hearing. What are you seeing in terms of growth in Maury County?

Ogles: Yeah. I mean, we’re growing. So when you think about Maury County, we have Spring Hill, Colombia, Culleoka, and Mount Pleasant. Those are kind of your larger areas.

Leahy: I am almost one of your constituents. Our mailing address is in Thompson Station. I live in the city of Spring Hill. And as you know, I think about a third of the city of Spring Hill is in Maury County and about two-thirds of it. I don’t know the exact numbers in Williamson County. So I’m just a couple of miles away from Maury County. Spring Hill is, in essence, sort of an extension of the Nashville suburbs.

Ogles: That’s right. And when you think about Maury County, you think about the growth. The Maury County side of Spring Hill in the last couple of years has actually been the part of Spring Hill that’s growing the fastest.

Leahy: And why is that?

Ogles: Well, there’s a couple of reasons. One is it’s a little bit cheaper to build a home in Maury County than it is Williamson County.

Leahy: Why is it cheaper to build a home in Maury County than Williamson County?

Ogles: So Williamson County has some impact fees that a builder has to pay that immediately is layered on top of the price of the home. So since the building a Maury County, for that reason alone, it’s a little bit cheaper. And then just supply of land. The Williamson County side grew first. You have greater density up there. Now the Maury County side of Spring Hill is growing. But that being said, now what you’re seeing is that the northside of the county is growing. The midsection of the county is growing.

Leahy: That midsection would be around Columbia.

Ogles: Columbia, the downtown area. But then also out in the country where I live the southern area. So there’s a road called Morrow Lane.

Leahy: I know it well, it’s just south of Columbia.

Ogles: That’s right. And there’s about I don’t know, seven or eight lots there. And all of those houses that are going up are in the 425 to 450 range, and those houses are selling before they’re even done.

Leahy: So it’s a hot real estate market there.

Ogles: It’s booming. And then I have a friend that was looking at a house there in Columbia and been on the market for a day, and they were scheduled to go see the house today and it’s already sold.

Leahy: I’ve heard that.

Ogles: With multiple offers.

Leahy: I’ve heard that story so many times here from friends that are looking for houses. And I do get a bit of how shall we say, I wish that California money would stay in California.

Ogles: Yeah right. Well, I will say that we’re seeing the same thing in Maury County that Williamson and Nashville are seeing folks from New Jersey, New York, California, Wisconsin, and a little bit out of Washington.

Leahy: Washington State.

Ogles: Yeah, but they’re refugees that they’re conservative refugees that are leaving the state for lack of a better term because they felt persecuted. But I’ve been rather outspoken. And so a lot of these folks will seek me out and say, hey, we’re California. I just want to say thank you or whatever, and I just feel like, okay, pause. Wait a minute. You left for a reason. Please don’t Californicate Maury County, Tennessee.

Leahy: Now how do they respond when you say please don’t Californicate Maury County?

Ogles: You can kind of self-deprecate, kind of make light of a situation, but they acknowledge the truth that yes, we know we left. Don’t hate us because we’re from California. Don’t hate us because we’re from New Jersey. We’re here because we agree with you. We agree with Tennessee.

Leahy: Well, now let me follow up with that. In theory they agree?

Ogles: They agree.

Leahy: Okay. Now Let’s get down to it is the next thing they say. Why don’t you have X, Y, or Z?

Ogles: Well back home this is how we do it. Well you left back home and you are in Tennessee now and it’s cheaper to live here because we don’t do it that way.

Leahy: Do you get a lot of that?

Ogles: Again, I think most people recognize that, especially like California. Yes, they have X, Y, and Z, but it’s not sustainable. It’s not working. You can’t continue to rob the taxpayer to fund these rainbow and unicorn programs and not realize that at some point you just run out of money. And that’s what our federal government has been doing.

Leahy: In the course of your typical week in Maury County, how many people do you run into that are new residents of Maury County?

Ogles: It’s a lot. I mean, it’s daily.

Leahy: Daily. Every day.

Ogles: I try it in the morning. I don’t get to do this every day, just kind of full disclosure. But I like to spend whether it’s a little bit of time in the morning or kind of during lunch, a little time on the square, just sitting outside.  I’ll be on my phone, answering emails. But one, it’s just good to get some fresh air.

Leahy: So hold on. You are the mayor of Maury County. And so the way you hold sort of public hours, I suppose you could say is you sit on the square?

Ogles: Well, my office is on the square.

Leahy: It’s inside the big building, the inside the square.

Ogles: But I like to be accessible. So it’s not free time so much because I’m responding to emails or I’m on the phone, but I’m there.

Leahy: Is there, like, the mayor’s bench?

Ogles: (Chuckles) No.

Leahy: Where do you sit? How do people know that you’re the mayor of Maury County?

Ogles: Well, the coffee shop there is right next to my office. So I’ll sit out there on their bench.

Leahy: So you sit on the bench outside of the coffee shop?

Ogles: That’s right. Or outside of Puckett’s.

Leahy: Okay, so there you are in your smiling and answering emails, doing work. Do people come up and say, hey, mayor, what are you doing about X, Y, or Z?

Ogles: No. I mean, in Maury County, we’ve got a great County Commission. They’re not always going to agree with one another, but fiscally conservative trying to manage this growth without raising taxes. And we try to be proactive. So we’ve invested in things like our emergency services because, again, we’re growing so fast.

I would think, by and large, that most individuals in Maury County, like where we are and where we’re headed, with the exception of maybe some of the transplants that don’t quite get that you’re not going to have recycling services out in the rural part of the county. It’s just not feasible to do that. We do, however, have recycling centers that you can take it yourself, but we’re not going to come to pick it up.

Leahy: But how do people know that there’s the mayor hanging out on the bench by the coffee shop in the square?

Ogles: Well, because of The Tennessee Star. (Leahy laughs)

Leahy: But this is radio right? Do you put a sign the mayor is in? (Chuckles)

Ogles: No, not at all. Actually, it’s funny when you’re out there, it’s not my most productive time because I end up talking to people kind of back to back, but it’s good. That’s the part of the job that I love. I spent a lot of my time chained to a desk, answering emails on the phone, being an advocate for Maury County with the legislature with the governor’s office. So it’s nice to be out in the public and actually just have a conversation.

Leahy: So when was the last time you were out there on the bench by the coffee shop on the square?

Ogles: Yesterday morning.

Leahy: Describe one of the people that came up to you.

Ogles: One of my fun interactions was just an older gentleman, not someone you would assume was maybe in tune with what was going on was somewhat disheveled.

Leahy: Did he recognize you?

Ogles: He sat down and just said, I appreciate all you’re doing.

Leahy: That was it.

Ogles: He was just plain and as a matter of fact about it. And didn’t need anything, didn’t want anything.

Leahy: Oh, don’t you love those kinds of conversations? But you’re actually very good at dealing with people that are asking questions or want something. It’s different. Like doing a radio show, you just get to talk, and you don’t have to do anything. You just get to talk. You actually have to do stuff.

Listen to the full second hour here:

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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio