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Controversial author visits Atlanta 

David Sirota comes to Manuel's Tavern

On Wed., Aug. 2, Georgia for Democracy and A Cappella Books team to bring famed political strategist and writer David Sirota to Atlanta to discuss his new book, Hostile Takeover. The young author warns that rampant political corruption is destroying middle-class America, and he doesn't hesitate to name names (ahem, Abramoff) from either party in his scathing best seller. Sirota's well-earned status as a Capitol Hill insider brings a unique and unflinching perspective of the moral decay plaguing much of the political realm. News junkies may recognize Sirota from his regular contributions to the Nation and the L.A. Times, but even the laziest of couch potatoes has probably seen him on "The Colbert Report" or CNN.

7:30 p.m. Manuel's Tavern, 602 N. Highland Ave. 404-755-4701.

· BUCKHEAD BUSINESS ASSOCIATION The BBA meets over breakfast to discuss the economic and cultural vitality of Buckhead. Join the group in this weekly tradition Thurs., July 27, with guest speaker Deborah Richardson, CEO of the Atlanta Women's Foundation. Cost for non-members: $15. Thursdays, 7:30-9 a.m. Anthony's restaurant, 3109 Piedmont Road. 404-467-7607.

· ATLANTA STONEWALL DEMOCRATS Be a loud Blue dot in this big Red State. Join this left-leaning lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender group at its next meeting, Thurs., July 27, as members network and strategize to make their voices -- and votes -- count. Fourth Thursday of every month, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Loca Luna, 836 Juniper St. 404-607-1865.

· SYLVAN HILLS NEIGHBORS All residents of Sylvan Hills are invited to attend these neighborhood public meetings. Recent activities included a successful Hands On Atlanta landscaping project. To add an item to the meeting agenda for Thurs., July 27, e-mail the association at at least one week in advance. Last Thursday of every month, 7 p.m. Easter Seals Child Development Center, 1757 Melrose Drive. 404-758-7774.

· YOUNG REPUBLICANS The Buckhead Young Republicans hold mixers on the fourth Thursday of each month, aptly titled "Fourth Thursday Socials." Drinks, political discussion, networking -- and most importantly, free appetizers -- will all be on the menu Thurs., July 27. Fourth Thursday of every month, 8 p.m. 770-265-5268.

· DRINKING LIBERALLY The local chapter of this national organization, which aims to promote democracy "one pint at a time," encourages Democrats to discuss politics, current events and whatever else comes up after a few drinks. The next Drinking Liberally is Thurs., July 27. Thursdays, 8 p.m. Thinking Man Tavern, 537 W. Howard Ave., Decatur. 404-370-1717.

· Jamaican IMMIGRATION FORUM On Fri., July 28, United For Jamaica is sponsoring a town hall meeting and forum on immigration, during which a panel will discuss new immigration laws and how they affect the Caribbean diaspora. Learn your rights as West Indian immigrants in America, and have your questions answered. Network with powerful individuals while enjoying some Caribbean refreshments in this kickoff of Jamaican Independence activities. 5 p.m. Hillside Presbyterian Church, 1879 Columbia Drive, Decatur.

· LIBERTARIAN SOCIAL The Libertarian Party of Georgia is hosting an open social at Smith's Olde Bar. Join other Atlanta Libertarians in a relaxed atmosphere for conversation, cocktails and networking. Meet like-minded politicos, party officials and candidates. This informal event is open to all LP members and those who are simply interested in learning more about the party. Sat., July 29, 8 p.m. Smith's Olde Bar, 1578 Piedmont Ave. 404-875-1522.

· NEIGHBORHOOD PLANNING UNIT B This NPU serves 12 neighborhoods, including Buckhead, Brookhaven, Chastain Park south, and Garden Hills. The unit's next meeting is Tues., Aug. 1. First Tuesday of every month, 7-9 p.m. Second Ponce de Leon Baptist Church, 2715 Peachtree Road. 404-233-1355.

· FULTON COMMISSIONERS Come to the Fulton County Commission meeting Wed., Aug. 2, to hear zoning cases, or at the end of the month to hear commissioner and county manager issues. First and third Wednesday of every month, 10 a.m. Fulton County Government Center's Assembly Hall, 141 Pryor St. 404-730-8200.

· YOUNG DEMS OF ATLANTA The Young Democrats of Atlanta meet monthly to socialize, talk politics, and figure out ways to get young people involved in campaigns. Their next event is Wed., Aug. 2. First Wednesday of every month, 6:30 p.m. Manuel's Tavern, 602 N. Highland Ave. 404-525-3447.

· SOUTH ATLANTA NEIGHBORS South Atlantans for Neighborhood Development serves residents and businesses in Ormewood Park, Boulevard Heights and Benteen Park. Residents are encouraged to attend the next meeting, Thurs., Aug. 3, and voice their concerns. First Thursday of every month, 7:30 p.m. Ormewood Park Presbyterian Church, 1071 Delaware Ave. 404-627-2216.

· Political Party

· Join CL Editor Ken Edelstein and a panel of local politicos and players at the next Political Party Wed., Aug. 9, where the topic will be global warming. The event, which is open to the public and encourages discussion of issues facing metro Atlanta, is held the second Wednesday of every month. 7:30 p.m., Dad's Garage Theatre, 280 Elizabeth St.

· Want to publicize a political or civic event? E-mail

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