The Marcy campaign sent this press release:
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
The Jackson Public School Board voted 4-3 today to accept an agreement with the Mississippi Department of Education so it could keep its accreditation after voting 4-3 yesterday to reject the same agreement. However, the decision was met with strong protests by several board members who argued the agreement took away the district's right to appeal. The department said it would revoke the district's accreditation by November 1 if the district did not ratify the agreement. Earlier post
The Jackson Public School Board reversed itself and voted 4-3 to accept an agreement with the Department of Education concerning its special education program. The agreement allows the Jackson Public School District to keep its accreditation. More to follow later as I upload the complete video and write a full post.Click Here to Read More..
Monday, October 29, 2012
JPS School Board rejects settlement with state by a 4-3 vote. JPS could lose its accreditation Thursday. Apparently the Board and attorney Jim Keith don't want to forfeit the right to appeal in a settlement as they think they can win in court. Nice. How much more money will be wasted by this broke district on a legal fees?Click Here to Read More..
The 2012 annual actuarial report states the funding level for the "Supplemental Legislative Retirement Plan" (SLRP) fell to 68% from 73% in 2011. The legislature passed SLRP in 1999. The plan gives legislators retirement benefits that are 150% of what state employees receive under PERS.
Sunday, October 28, 2012
Saturday, October 27, 2012
Here is an example of the pressure that was put on Vicki Slater, a Madison attorney who is also chairwoman of the Mississippi Association for Justice (trial lawyers group), to drop out of the race against Republican Congressman Gregg Harper. A prominent local attorney involved in Democrat Party politics urged her in this email to drop out of the race. Needless to say, she apparently followed his advice. What was interesting was he urged her to drop out to help Earle Banks in his race against Chief Justice Bill Waller. Read for yourself. Its actually pretty good reading and I don't mean that in a bad way.
Friday, October 26, 2012
Thursday, October 25, 2012
Collection of all posts on PERS
The annual PERS actuarial report states the funding level for the Mississippi Public Employees Retirement System fell to 58% at the end of the 2012 fiscal year. PERS has been under scrutiny for several years as the funding level fell over several years even though contributions from employees and employers were increased. What is even more troubling is the deficit between contributions and payments to retirees jumped to $641,704,000. PERS earned a return on investments of only 0.6%. PERS investments are $19.8 billion.
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
The Sun-Herald provided an update on the special-needs 14 year-old student assaulted at George County High School last week:
" LUCEDALE -- Austin Stokes, the 14-year-old special needs student who was assaulted at George County High School last week, wanted to go back to school Tuesday, but his mother said the principal asked that Austin wait until Thursday.
"He wanted a day or so, so he could plan something for Austin's return," she said. But she said she wasn't sure what.
According to Lori Ann Dees, the principal also said Austin would not be welcome on the football team's float in Tuesday night's homecoming parade.
Dees said Austin had been invited to ride the float by a mother of one of the football players. The theme was to have been anti-bullying and Austin was excited to accept the invitation, she said.
But Dees said the principal who called told her rumors that Austin was hit by a football player caused such a stir in the Athletic Department that it would not be possible for Austin to ride the float.
"He said he felt it would cause more problems if he rode on the float with the football players," Dees said. "Austin was disappointed, but I asked him what he'd like to do instead of the homecoming parade, and he said he'd like to go to the county fair in Pascagoula. So that's what we're going to do." Article
This website did post it was a football player who hit Austin. The student was listed on a previous roster of the football team. The mother posted on her FB page it was a student. This website has attempted to contact the mother several times with no success.
Amy McCullough writes in Bigger Pie Forum about the start-up problems of Silicor and its $94 million state and local tax incentive packages. Silicor is a startup solar silicon and aluminum byproducts manufacturer that received a nice $75 million loan from Mississippi to open a plant in Columbus. Ms. McCullough reports:
"The company has had problems since the Mississippi Legislature approved $75.25 million on Sept. 2, 2011. About 12 days later the company -- then called Calisolar -- laid off 80 employees at its California solar cell manufacturing plant. It changed its business model and rebranded itself as Silicor Materials in March 2012....
The solar industry as a whole is struggling. See Bigger Pie Forum's post: "Should MS learn from its mistakes and prevent solar 'beef plants'?" "Lack of market assessment" was named by then-state Auditor Phil Bryant as one of the main pitfalls of the beef plant in his 2005 report on "what went wrong and how to prevent the same thing from happening in the future" called a "A Limited Review of the Mississippi Beef Processor's Cull Cow Project.”
Rest of post about Silicor at Bigger Pie Forum.
Bigger Pie Forum has purchased distribution rights on Jackson Jambalaya
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
"Alice Walker, author of the Pulitzer-prize winning novel “The Color Purple,” says she is refusing to allow an Israeli publisher to release her book in Hebrew, because she believes Israel is an “apartheid” state. In a letter she wrote to the Israeli publisher Yediot Books and posted Sunday on the website “Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel,” Walker leveled strident accusations, characterizing Israeli policies as being “far worse” than the U.S. before civil rights...." Article
Click Here to Read More..
Monday, October 22, 2012
I will be live-blogging the final debate tonight. Yes, final is the word. I don't think we can take many more of these mano a mano scenes. I expect the President to stay aggressive. Interesting to see what Romney will do as he hasn't said much about foreign policy and its the one area where a challenger is at a disadvantage. Feel free to comment as the debate goes. The big question is when do I eat this Krystal apple pie. Discovered them last week. Reminds me of how good they used to be at McDonald's before they started baking the damn things. Deep=fried, filled with apples, makes you think you are a little kid without a care in the world as you think mom is the greatest because she got you in one in the drive-through right after she picked you up from school. Anyway, I digress.
Its time. We are who about to die salute you.
No chest bumps. Figured they would be broh's by now. Going straight to Middle East and Libya. Bob bringing back Romney's quotes about Libya. Nice move by Romney to congratulate the President on killing Osama. Obama comes back with "brought the boys home" theme. Obama sounding presidential in his answer but gets off Libya real quick. Compares cost of Libyan intervention to Iraq. Good point. Romney a little shaky. Romney going into the laundry list. Gender equality? Um, even the so-called moderate Muslims don't believe in that goal. Romney mentions Egypt but leaves out brotherhood talking about tearing up the peace treaty with Israel. Obama is on the attack but Romney is taking it in stride. Romney letting him slide on Libya. Um, did everything possible? Ok. Romney coming back on Russia. Uh oh. Just mentioned Obama's comments to Russia about waiting until after the election.
President said you have to be clear on foreign policies. Romney can get him here on yes he was clear to Russia: we wouldn't oppose them, clear to Iran that we would stop Israel, and so on. At this point they are both landing punches.
Time for Syria. President says "organizing international community." Um, like Russia? President's rhetoric on Syria doesn't match the facts on the ground. Um, Mitt, what if there are no "responsible parties" in Syria? They won't admit that little fact. Here we are back on Libya again. Will Romney let him skate again? Back to Syria. Romney says no no-fly zones in Syria. Smart. Americans are war-weary. Bob brings up Mubarak. No regrets about telling him to go? Um, Obama is begging Romney to bring up the Muslim Brotherhood and what they are doing. Yeesh. Protect rights of women? They are attacking women in Egypt. They are running out the Christians. Will Romney respond? Now Obama is saying we have to "do things at home as well"? Obama flubbed that one. Now Romney responds on Egypt. Romney walks away from Egypt. Damn. Will he take a swing instead of presenting a policy paper? Now he is bringing up budget cuts and debt? Weak. Obama is giving more specifics on foreign policy as Romney did on the economy. Round to Obama.
What is America's role in the world. Expect them both to sing kumbaya here. Is Romney afraid of being called mean? Starting to look like it. He finally hits him on Obama's silence on the aborted Green Revolution. Obama taking credit for ending war in Iraq. Romney has yet to mention the surge, which is what really solved the problem. Obama now claims to be Israel's best friend. Will Romney respond to that one? Here we are back on the economy and the President is going to his well-used cliches. Obama throwing punches about Bush and Cheney. Did they land? Now Romney responds about the economy. Obama gave Romney a chance to play to his strength, which he is doing BUT NONE OF THIS IS ABOUT FOREIGN POLICY! Nice line about Latin America. Now we are talking about schools and teachers' unions?
This is where moderator should jump in and bring them back to foreign policy. NOW we are debating education. Will Mitt hit him on education? Chicago would be a good start. Obama backstabbing the kids who used vouchers in DC is another one. Now we are debating who wants to hire more teachers. Give me a break. Where is the moderator? He finally puts a stop to it but here we go again on education. we are halfway there.
Bigger military. Where does the money come from? No one points out our fighters are 40 years old. Not to mention our equipment is worn out after ten years of war. Here we are fighting over deficits and budgets. Obama needs to realize by fighting over the economy he is giving away his advantage to Romney. Brings up navy. Did Obama say horses and bayonets? Oooooooook.
Isreal and Iran. Obama opens up defending Israel. Operative phrase though: "If they are attacked". President points out state of Iranian economy. Good point. Good rebuttal is to point out there are two Iranian economies- one for the Quods and one for everyone else. Quods is doing just fine. Romney sounding tough on Iran, comparing them to apartheid and genocide "incitation". Obama sounding presidential again. Not being flippant, sounding sober and reasoned. Romney brings up green revolution. Nice jab. Mentions daylight quote. Obama looks ready to pounce. Response is to call Romney a liar. Oooook. Oh damn, it just got real. Mentions Romney's investments. Obama throwing punches. Will Romney?
"They noticed that you skipped Israel". Nice jab. He's letting him get away with the China comment. Now they are trading shots on general foreign policy. Damn. We still have 30 minutes or so to go. Is Obama really saying "I would take that shot"? Oh you did, did you? I'm giving slight edge to Obama at this point in the debate.
Afghanistan. Romney commits to bringing troops home by end of 2014. Surge been successful. The Afghans troops are shooting our troops. Never mind. Wow. Dick Morris agrees with me. WHAT? Did Obama just say "we were bogged down in Iraq"??? That begs for a retort. Will Romney let it slide? Bob does what Romney won't: brings up the arrest of the doctor who helped us. Will Mitt hit Barack on that one? At this point probably not. I need to hurry up and get to the fourth glass of this red zin. 15 more minutes. Ugh.
Um, HOW did we get this far into a foreign policy debate on China? Whoah. Did Bob just ask about drones? Yup and Mitt agrees with Obama's use of them. WOW, did we actually get to China with just a few minutes to go? Yes, we did. Obama says we will insist they "play by the rules". Um, hard to do when they own so much of our debt. China wants the world to be free and open? Um Mitt, that is when they get to ignore the rules. A little over five minutes to go. I want to eat that apple pie. Almost there. Romney brings up China not playing by the rules. Romney finally on firmer ground discussing China. Probably because its more of an economic argument. Obama gets personal again with Chinese investments. Oh please. Lets look at Obama's pension. I bet there are plenty of Chinese investments in that portfolios. Now Obama is attacking Romney. Where is the Romney who said Obama put 50 years of tax breaks for oil companies into one year for green energy? Now we are arguing over auto bailouts. Sigh. Back to arguing over economics. We are going to close by who wants to hire more teachers? ARRRRGGGGHHHHH!!!!!!!!!
"I think we all love teachers". FINALLY!
Closing statement time. Please like me. Romney held his own at times in this debate, took shots in others. I give this debate to Obama. No knockdowns, nothing like the first debate, but edge to Obama but both appeared to be sober and serious.
USM football player's mom has to leave after she went off on someone heckling her son. Needless to say, some yokel at the game recorded the outburst and then of course posted it on Youtube. Sorry about the title embedded in the video. I didn't do it and frankly, I'm not changing it as I want people to see how some "fans" treat the parents of these players. Looks like racism to me but that's just me.
Now if the team would have some of this mom's passion, maybe they would not be um, winless.
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Senators Kay Bailey-Hutchison and Barbara Mikulski promoted single-sex education on the op-ed pages of the Wall Street Journal last week:
"Studies have shown that some students learn better in a single-gender environment, particularly in math and science. But federal regulations used to prevent public schools from offering that option. So in 2001 we joined with then-Sen. Hillary Clinton and Sen. Susan Collins to author legislation that allowed public schools to offer single-sex education. It was an epic bipartisan battle against entrenched bureaucracy, but well worth the fight.
Since our amendment passed, thousands of American children have benefited. Now, though, some civil libertarians are claiming that single-sex public-school programs are discriminatory and thus illegal.
To be clear: The 2001 law did not require that children be educated in single-gender programs or schools. It simply allowed schools and districts to offer the choice of single-sex schools or classrooms, as long as opportunities were equally available to boys and girls. In the vast and growing realm of education research, one central tenet has been confirmed repeatedly: Children learn in different ways. For some, single-sex classrooms make all the difference.
Critics argue that these programs promote harmful gender stereotypes. Ironically, it is exactly these stereotypes that the single-sex programs seek to eradicate.
As studies have confirmed—and as any parent can tell you—negative gender roles are often sharpened in coeducational environments. Boys are more likely, for instance, to buy into the notion that reading isn't masculine when they're surrounded by (and showing off for) girls.
Girls, meanwhile, have made so much progress in educational achievement that women are overrepresented in postgraduate education. But they still lag in the acquisition of bachelor's and graduate degrees in math and the sciences. It has been demonstrated time and again that young girls are more willing to ask and answer questions in classrooms without boys.
A 2008 Department of Education study found that "both principals and teachers believed that the main benefits of single-sex schooling are decreasing distractions to learning and improving student achievement." The gender slant—the math-is-for-boys, home-EC-is-for-girls trope—is eliminated.
In a three-year study in the mid-2000s, researchers at Florida's Stetson University compared the performance of single-gender and mixed-gender classes at an elementary school, controlling for the likes of class sizes, demographics and teacher training. When the children took the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (which measures achievement in math and literacy, for instance), the results were striking: Only 59% of girls in mixed classes were scored as proficient, while 75% of girls in single-sex ones achieved proficiency. Similarly, 37% of boys in coeducational classes scored proficient, compared with 86% of boys in the all-boys classes.
Booker T. Washington High School in Memphis, Tenn., the winner of the 2011 Race to the Top High School Commencement Challenge, went to a 81.6% graduation rate in 2010 from a graduation rate of 55% in 2007. Among the changes at the school? Implementing all-girls and all-boys freshman academies.
In Dallas, the all-boys Barack Obama Leadership Academy opened its doors last year. There is every reason to believe it will follow the success of the first all-girls public school, Irma Rangel Young Women's Leadership School, which started in 2004. Irma Rangel, which has been a Texas Education Agency Exemplary School since 2006, also took sixth place at the Dallas Independent School District's 30th Annual Mathematics Olympiad that year.
No one is arguing that single-sex education is the best option for every student. But it is preferable for some students and families, and no one has the right to deny them an option that may work best for a particular child. Attempts to eliminate single-sex education are equivalent to taking away students' and parents' choice about one of the most fundamentally important aspects of childhood and future indicators of success—a child's education.
America once dominated educational attainment among developed countries, but we have fallen disastrously in international rankings. As we seek ways to offer the best education for all our children, in ways that are better tailored to their needs, it seems not just counterproductive but damaging to reduce the options. single-sex education in public schools will continue to be a voluntary choice for students and their families. To limit or eliminate single-sex education is irresponsible. To take single-sex education away from students who stand to benefit is unforgivable.
Ms. Hutchison, a Republican, is the senior senator from Texas. Ms. Mikulski, a Democrat, is the senior senator from Maryland.
I strongly support single-sex education, especially in the lower grades. Look at the unwed birthrates in Mississippi. 70% in Hinds County. Probably higher in the black community. Some counties have rates of nearly 90%. Let that sink into your brain for a minute. Compare the graduation and dropout rates between boys and girls in Mississippi. Some of these schools such as Wingfield and Provine had graduation rates in the 50's but when you examine them by sex, the male graduation rate is in the 30's. That's right. At some schools barely a third of the boys graduate. Boys growing up on the streets, no dads, no positive male role models, yet we expect the teachers to just fix everything. Separate the children by sex until high school and try use same-sex teachers when possible, especially for the boys.
You can pay for it now.... or pay for it later when Chris Epps says he needs more money.
You may remember this video about raw sewage pouring onto Sheffield Drive after a city pipe busted:
Well, the city decided upon a temporary solution: Set up a pump that operates 24/7 and makes a Who concert seem quiet and then pipe the um, stuff, through the yard of a pre-school and then the playground at Parham Bridges:
Earlier post with more details of the sewage problem
Saturday, October 20, 2012
The school board districts are population-based, but are not the same as county supervisor districts. (Canton has its own Canton Separate School District.) Your district is indicated on your voter registration card.
Madison County School Board members do not serve a particular attendance zone or list of schools. Board members are called to make decisions in the best interests of the entire school system and all Madison County taxpayers.
School board members serve staggered six-year terms. Districts 1 and 2 were on the ballot in 2010. District 5 will be up for election in 2014. Districts 3 and 4 are on the ballot now.
The current board includes the following:
Ken McCoy, representing District 1 since 1996: McCoy is division manager for a major biotechnology firm.
Bill Grissett, representing District 2 since 2004: Grissett is a retired police officer and currently works in the computer industry.
Philip Huskey, representing District 4. Appointed in January 2011, Huskey is running for election to the board and is unopposed. Huskey is an attorney.
Shirley Simmons, representing District 5. Simmons has over 20 years of service on the board and is a well-respected member of our community.
I was appointed to the board in December 2011 as the member for District 3, and I am a candidate for election to the office on November 6.
As the only woman on the board with school-age children, I bring a fresh and relevant perspective to the position, while my experiences as a registered dietitian working in health and wellness provide me with key insight into issues vital not only to school performance but to general well-being and growth. Additionally, as an active community volunteer and a working artist, I bring the passion, dedication and imagination to help create an environment where all our children can flourish.
If I am elected, my goals include: implementing comprehensive long-range planning, ensuring academic excellence at all levels (including gifted and advanced placement education), promoting fiscal responsibility, advocating for a healthy school environment and supporting education in visual and performing arts.
I hope I can count on your vote. Our children are counting on us.
To learn more about my service on and goals for the Madison County School Board, like my Facebook page: www.facebook.com/JanetDShearer.
by Janet Shearer, candidate for Madison County School Board, District 3.
This post is a paid advertisement. Click Here to Read More..
The dreaded and feared Certificate of Need law appeared at the Mississippi Supreme Court this week. This time the victim is UMC:
"JACKSON — The Mississippi Supreme Court has refused to reconsider its ruling that the University of Mississippi Medical Center must follow the state's certificate-of-need law.
The court today denied requests to revisit its June ruling.
Mississippi's CON law limits where hospitals can locate and expand and what services they can provide.
The court ruled UMMC, as a competitor in the hospital marketplace, must abide by the same CON laws as the other 100-plus hospitals in Mississippi. However, the court said state health officials can determine when UMMC must do so.
UMMC said it was not subject to the CON law. St. Dominic-Jackson Memorial Hospital, Health Management Associates and Mississippi Baptist Medical Center took the view that the laws apply to UMMC as to all hospitals."
Perhaps its time to get signatures and put abolishing the CON law on the ballot.
Friday, October 19, 2012
Second Update: WLOX published this story on its website. The story includes an interview with the victim and his mother. The victim says the whole thing started when he was called a retard. The Superintendent issued this statement:
"It has also come to our attention that some person(s) have reported to the traditional and social media and have displayed photographs as well as given partial or inaccurate accounts of events believed to have happened at our school. Because of confidentiality rights of our students, we cannot publicly respond to the charges and accusations that some people have made. We have been and continue to cooperate with all law enforcement agencies as this incident is investigated, and we encourage the public to allow the official agencies to take such action as the law allows and is deemed appropriate by those agencies. Out of respect to our students and George County, we encourage no further gossip on social media sites"
JJ stands by everything posted as I consider my sources to be very reliable.
Update: Spoken to reliable sources in George County. It is alleged the defendant hit him in the face with one punch. The one punch was enough to knock him out of his wheelchair and put him on the ground. It also alleged the disabled student threw or dropped a coke can (CP victims have poor muscular control) and said the word "bitch".* The case will probably be handled in Youth Court. It seems the only applicable charge may be simple assault as there was no weapon used nor is there an attempted murder statute.
Original post: Warning: This stuff is graphic and the pictures are bloody in nature. No way to sugar coat this as a football player in George County is accused of beating up a half-paralyzed kid suffering from cerebal palsy. The Sun-Herald reported:
LUCEDALE - Authorities have confirmed a complaint has been lodged alleging a special-needs student was assaulted by another student Thursday at George County High School.
Shonna Pierce of the George County Sheriff's Office said deputies were told an unnamed student allegedly thought the disabled student had thrown a soda can at him so he beat up the wheelchair-bound student. (KF note: That is the story given to my sources as well as the disabled student called him a name.).
A hospital emergency room called the sheriff's office about the incident, but since it happened on a school campus, the school resource office is leading the investigation at the present, Pierce said.
School security chief Al Hillman said any information about the incident would have to come from the district superintendent's office.
The district office could not be immediately reached for comment Friday morning.
The injured student reportedly was released from the hospital.
These photos and messages are from the mother's Facebook page. She encouraged people to share them. Here are her messages:
This is my 14 year old son Austin Stokes. He attends George County High and was beaten by a senior twice his size. Austin has cerebral palsy and he is only able to use the right side of his body as the left side is paralyzed. I was told by officials that SIMPLE assault is the only charge the attacker will be charged with. Austin suffers from seizures, is legally blind and could not defend himself. The offender has not been arrested and I ask, how is this fair? Where in the world is it ok to punch a special needs child in the face?? He was hit so hard that he became airborne, spun around and busted his mouth on the concrete and was unconscious!! Something has to be done.
We are home and Austin is resting.. I will make sure that boy gets what he deserves. There is never a reason for someone to put their hands on a disabled kid. Jeffery Blackston is a piece of shit!!!!!
A pic of the alleged perp is posted at the bottom of the post.
*I hesitated to quote the word "bitch" but I did not want the victim to be accused of making a racist remark when he clearly did not do so.
Last note: Dear Jim Keith, there are plenty of good lawyers down on the coast that can represent this district.
It was never a good sign on Dallas when Lieutenant Harry McSwain appeared on the scene as it usually meant J.R. have someone threatened or arrested. Hinds County Constable Jerry Moore is quickly acquiring the same reputation as in August he arrested Hinds County Republican Party Chairman Pete Perry.
The Hinds County Election Commission met in August to discuss the redistricting of Election Commissioner districts for the November Election. Supervisor Robert Graham was pressuring the commission to approve them as quickly as possible. Two precincts over 90% black were added to the district while one that was almost evenly divided between blacks and whites was removed.
The arrest warrant stemmed from an incident at a June meeting of the Election Commission. Hinds County resident Ineva May-Pittman addressed the commission (A JJ video of Ms. Pittman is posted below from a meeting of the Board of Supervisors.). At some point an argument ensured between Ms. Pittman and Commissioner Connie Cochran. Mr. Perry was sitting between the two individuals. Ms. Pittman alleged in charges filed against Mr. Perry that he “interrupted her public presentation and that he called her a “bad” word.) Mr. Perry said his warrant stated the charge was "general assault". It is important to note there have been no allegations of physical contact.
Mr. Perry told JJ the August meeting began 45 minutes late. He said shortly after it began, Mr. Graham entered the meeting with Constable Moore in tow. Constable Moore announced he had a warrant for Mr. Perry's arrest. Mr. Perry said the constable would not allow him to finish the meeting but instead took him into custody. Constable Moore promptly took him to Judge Sutton's courtroom where Mr. Perry sat for over 2 1/2 hours until Judge Sutton allowed him to post bail. The meeting was over when Mr. Perry was finally allowed to leave custody.
This is not the first time Mr. Graham or Constable Moore have been accused of abusing the legal process. Attorney Dennis Sweet alleged the constable illegally kicked open the door to a home and took a child from a grandmother in the Vance case in federal court. Hinds County resident alleged Mr. Graham used a Hinds County Deputy to have him removed from the Tougaloo precinct last year on election day even though he was a poll worker.
Mr. Perry reported the incident on my radio show two weeks ago. He discusses it at the end of the show at 41:00.
Thursday, October 18, 2012
It was bound to happen and it finally did. The JFP and the Tea Party locked up into a scrum that covered several websites. This particular food fight started four months ago when JFP reporter R.L Knave interviewed several representatives of the Central Mississippi Tea Party. CMTP President made a comment that will not be easily forgotten by more than a few people:
"Lane: I'm really going to set you back here. Probably the biggest turn we ever made was when the women got the right to vote.
What do you mean?
Lane: Our country might have been better off if it was still just men voting. There is nothing worse than a bunch of mean, hateful women. They are diabolical in how than can skewer a person. I do not see that in men. The whole time I worked, I'd much rather have a male boss than a female boss. Double-minded, you never can trust them.
Because women have the right to vote, I am active, because I want to make sure there is some sanity for women in the political world. It is up to the Christian rednecks and patriots to stand up for our country. Everyone has the right to vote now that's 18 or over (who is) a legal citizen, and every person that's 18 and over and a legal citizen should be active in local politics so they can make a change locally, make a change on the state level and make a change in Washington, D.C.
#God bless America." Interview, Video of quote (Note to JFP: Do yourself a favor and include the question as it will make it appear as though you are not "selectively editing")
The ever-shrinking Times-Picayune picked up the interview and the story gained legs recently. Alex McDaniel tried to figure out why it "re-ignited" in a blog post yesterday on the Clarion-Ledger website. Her Laddness could not resist commenting on the CL website and kindly instructing her as to why it stayed alive as I'm sure more than a few people appreciated the irony of her comments.
Enough was enough and Ms. Lane issued a press release posted on Keith Plunkett's Mississippi Pep blog that didn't mince any words. The words "hid" and "crafty editing" were used. Here it is in its entirety:
"Central Mississippi TEA Party President Janis Lane responds to Jackson Free Press smear campaign.
October 17, 2012--Janis Lane, President of the Central Mississippi TEA Party (CMTP) released today the following response to a recent smear campaign by the liberal publication the Jackson Free Press (JFP).
Earlier this year, Lane and two other CMTP officials agreed to participate in an interview with the left leaning publication. However, the reporter and the JFP photographer hid from the interviewees that they were video taping the interview. JFP editors have now conspired to discredit the TEA Party by crafty editing of the secretly recorded video to take out all context. It is also suspect that the editor’s of the publication would begin promoting the video 4 months later just prior to November elections.
Lane had this to say:
“While I attempt not to respond to ridiculous charges, I feel that I must address these despicable acts of the liberal publication Jackson Free Press to smear the Central Mississippi TEA Party and our efforts. The editors of this publication have stepped beyond simple political leanings into the realm of “attack dog” journalism. This is proof the liberal media in Mississippi will stoop to new levels of low to ‘create’ news, and to try anything to fight the conservative landslide that is taking place in Mississippi.
We were not told the interview was being recorded by video, and the angle of the shot clearly shows that it was being hidden from us.
The video version of the interview is an heavily edited portion that shows me making a statement in jest to badgering by the reporter about gender and whether women should be in politics. My response was ‘tongue in cheek’ and I gave a ridiculous answer, both in words and tone, to what I found to be a ridiculous premise.
I attempted to challenge his ridiculous line of questioning about men controlling women with an equally ridiculous statement about a women’s right to vote. It was my mistake to respond to his attempts to bait me, and to try to use sarcasm to prove my point of how outrageous his questions really were.
This only further proves that JFP has no commitment to journalistic standards, and they only serve to play “gotcha” politics for cheap publicity. After all, it is obvious that I believe women have a place in politics, or I wouldn’t be doing what I do every day to participate in the political process.
It is unfortunate that an opportunity for better understanding is manipulated by the writers and editors of JFP in order to further advance their liberal agenda in Mississippi. It is because of cheap stunts like this that everyday hard working Mississippians stay away from the political process. We at CMTP are a group of hard working and involved citizens trying to make a difference for our state and country. It is shameful that there are people like those at JFP that work against people who want to be involved in solving the problems that we all face.
I am committed to the TEA Party’s cause of Limited Government, Fiscal Responsibility, and Free Markets. I remain committed to lead our Tea Party to be active in local issues, statewide issues and national issues. I hope people will not allow this to damper their willingness to participate in the political process. I hope they will join us to help fight against this type of blatant manipulation and misinformation.”
The Central Mississippi TEA Party was originally formed as the Mississippi TEA Party in February of 2009. CMTP believes that we are Taxed Enough Already and that the federal government is too big and intrusive. CMTP stands for Limited Government, Fiscal Responsibility and Free Market Principles."
Well of course Madame DeLadd couldn't let that go unnoticed and had a few things to say in a comment:
"Funny. Clearly because this story has gone viral internationally, Janis Lane now -- months later -- is claiming that was secretly recorded in the interview she did with Ryan with our photographer and her camera right there in her face. She claims that we are trying to "smear" her because we quoted her in a Q&A interview and that we're "liberal," coincidentally falling back on using a label that segregationists back in the day loved to fling--along with "communist" and "socialist"--on journalists or anyone in our state supporting the African American right to vote. "
Figures. She just has to use the segregationist tag. When she is buried one day her soul will probably call the undertaker a segregationist if the coffin is not black but I digress as we have a good food fight going on here. Then the scrum, having invaded wordpress, the Clarion-Ledger, Jackson Free Press, and Facebook, now moved over to Twitter. Here we go:
Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett RT @MississippiPEP: Central Mississippi TEA Party President Janis Lane responds to Jackson Free Press smear campaign. 17 Oct
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett @mississippipep hahaha Secretly recorded with a recorder in her face?! Saying crazy stuff in an interview? Hilarious. Hahaha
Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett @DonnerKay I've spoken with all 3 of them and they all say they had no idea it was being recorded and the video taping was never mentioned.
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett I bet. ;-)
@Keithplunkett It was scheduled interview w/ cameras & recorders in full view. Remarkable they think that accusation changes what she said!
17 Oct Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett Other funny thing: They didn't complain when story/video came out in June. Just now when getting international attention. smh
Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett @DonnerKay only can say what I was told. It did appear to be a strange angle.
Keith Plunkett Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett @DonnerKay at any rate, she understands she should have never tried to respond with biting sarcasm. That was most definitely a mistake. Details
Keith Plunkett Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett @DonnerKay maybe back then they considered the source wasn't worth a response.
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett "strange angle"? lol. No hidden cameras. Here come the black helicopters. Why doesn't she just apologize for her "sarcasm"?
Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett She'd sound a whole lot more credible than in trying to stir up a conspiracy theory about an interview she consented to. smh.
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett Right. As much as Kim Wade has whined about the JFP over the years. More like: Didn't want people to see it.
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett Is the PEP site yours? Looks like you're stating as fact that we "hid" something from her. You know that for a fact?
Keith Plunkett Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett @DonnerKay As I read the statement she did.
Keith Plunkett Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett @DonnerKay via the statement: "It was my mistake to respond to his attempts to bait me, and to try to use sarcasm to prove my point"
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett Who wrote this? "the reporter and the JFP photographer hid from the interviewees that they were video taping the interview."
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett And this: " JFP editors have now conspired to discredit the TEA Party" Who publishes PEP?
Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett Not talking about the statement. I'm talking about the stuff stated as fact above it. Did you write it, Keith?
Keith Plunkett Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett @DonnerKay I publish @MississippiPEP. This was a verbatim statement issued through PR. Not an op-ed.
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett So you didn't write the first two paragraphs before her statement: "smear campaign," saying we "hid" stuff & we "conspired"?
Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett As the "publisher" of your site, you have to be careful about stuff like that.
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett If they wrote top part, you need to learn to post other people's garbage & make it clear you didn't make factual statements
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett And I don't see your name anywhere on the page.
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett No. Send me release, & I'll compare to part on your site: "released today the following response to a recent smear campaign"
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett The first two paragraphs at the link before her statement. Did you write them or not? Easy answer, Keith. Yes. No.
Donna Ladd @Keithplunkett It reads like you're accusing us of those things, if you don't get that by now.
Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett @DonnerKay my original content has my name, face and contact info on it.
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett Not on the blog post I saw and PDF'd.
Donna Ladd Donna Ladd @DonnerKay @Keithplunkett If it has your face on it, all the more "evidence" that you wrote intro paragraphs. Just a hint. Be careful abt how repost.
Keith Plunkett Keith Plunkett @Keithplunkett @DonnerKay point taken. several other contributors as well. Not just me.
Wow. After reading all that, I think I need to get an early start and make a batch of my egg nog six weeks early. That or go find a grog bowl.
Billy Redd of the Boys & Girls Club came on to talk about the big Blues by Starlight fund-raiser at Highland Village tonight for the first segment. Sheriff Tyrone Lewis appeared on the rest of the show. We discussed the fair and then the jail while taking several calls. Enjoy.
Trying to find out what happened this morning from law enforcement sources and left a message at U.S. Attorney's office in regards to a raid in Jackson today. The U.S. Marshals and other law enforcement personnel raided a house on Plantation Boulevard this morning. They arrested a black male and took him away in handcuffs. Here is a picture of the scene:
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
A local Einstein appeared at the Walgreens in Brandon tonight.
Drugged up individual attempted to get several people to buy prescription drugs when they were trying to enter the store. Brandon PD subdued and arrested him. Several emergency units responded. Police still onsite taking reports. There were two other police cars and a fire truck.
Amy McCullough writes in Bigger Pie Forum:
In his recent press release U.S. Senator Roger Wicker contradicts himself. He says it's bad for the Democratic Obama administration to give taxpayer dollars to private companies' experimental energy projects, but it's OK when Republicans in Mississippi do the same thing....
"Picking winners and losers" means giving American tax dollars to private, companies for energy experiments, like the solar company Solyndra, which received more than $500 million in federal money before going bankrupt.
Mississippi -- which is run by Republicans -- has been committing quite a lot of its taxpayer dollars to private companies' experimental projects...." Read the rest of the post
Bigger Pie Forum has purchased distribution rights on Jackson Jambalaya
Then Interim Superintendent Jayne Sargent of the Jackson Public School District promoted her son to the position of Executive Director of Research, Evaluation and Assessment only a few days before she left office on June 30, 2012. Dr. Jason Sargent was the principal at Rowan Middle School.
JJ obtained through a public records request a copy of Dr. Sargent's contract. The contract states Dr. Sargent is paid $86,355 for one year. The term of the contract expires on June 28, 2013 and started on July 2, 2012. July 2 was the first day Dr. Cedric Grey began his term as Superintendent of JPS. Jayne Sargent signed the contract on June 27, 2012. Her term expired on July 1. Press release announcing his appointment.
Editorial comment: That was the news, now for the opinion. Dr. Sargent gives her son a nice fat promotion with a nice fat salary to a nice fat position at Jackson Public Schools just a few days before she leaves office. I will leave the question as to whether this violates any nepotism laws to more learned people. Keep it up Superintendents. When the legislature clips your wings next year, you will have no one to blame but yourselves.
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
I'm live-blogging the debate tonight. Yes, we all expect the President to come out swinging. Should be interesting and I'm not going to make any predictions. We do play the game for a reason. Fire away in the comments.
The big question tonight? Will someone ask the candidates if we are their children. Here we go. We who are about to die salute you.
Romney takes the kickoff. First question. 20 yr-old college student? Uh-oh. How can you reassure me I can get a job? Like ANY candidate can answer that question truthfully. I wouldn't even ask Obama that question. Ok, lets go. Romney spent too much time on college itself. Points out the unemployment and student loan debt problem. Romney keeps saying he will create jobs. "Has what it takes to bring" the jobs back. Doesn't say how. No specifics. I expect Obama to seize on this. Obama appears more focused than last time. Obama getting more specific. Tax code, helping Detroit, education, worker retraining, energy. Green energy? He went there again? Uh-oh, Crowley now adds her own. What about the long-term unemployed? Still no specifics on how to create jobs. Interesting line about bankruptcy. Risky but interesting. Now Obama says "just isn't true". "Different set of rules" for "folks at the top". Obama on the attack. Obama is on his A game right now and Romney better rise to the challenge.
Second question. Energy secretary comments about not lowering gas prices. Obama dodging it. Obama ignores part about gas prices and focuses on "green energy". Will Romney counterpunch? Will Romney point out fed's creation of money to fund deficit spending caused them to rise? Nice point about Obama attacking energy companies in Montana. Romney rallying nicely on oil, gas, and coal, especially coal. Hello Pennsylvania and West Virginia. No word about Keystone. No word about shutting down production in the Gulf but Obama would probably tie him to BP. Uh oh, Candy says "Mr. President let me move you to the gist of the question?" Obama blames increased demand. Romney, say something about cheaper dollars increasing prices. Damn. Obama hits Romney with shutting down coal plant as Governor. Romney getting specific on cuts in licenses. Obama won't answer. Candy asking more questions than the audience. Obama saying Romney will collapse the economy and lower prices? Oooooooook. Romney arguing with Candy. Next question. They want to squabble, Candy moves them on. Nice job on Candy's part.
Taxes. Always a nice topic. Romney touts his tax plan. One can almost hear Obama saying "What he doesn't tell you.." You know, $250,000 in New York City or California really isn't that much. Um, tax rates when Bill Clinton was president? Clinton cut capital gains tax rates. Was good for the economy. Tax credit for kids going to college? We are paying you to send your kids to school. No one will call it that but that is what it is. Obama is attacking Romney and saying "tax cuts for the rich". I expect Romney to hit hard on this issue. Romney now pointing out economic stats for last four years. "We don't have to live like this." Can Obama do anything besides attack Romney? Here goes Candy asking questions again. Um, is that her job? Oh well, can't attack the moderator unless its Jim Lehrer. Here comes Obama spouting $5 trillion tax cuts. Romney still looking at Obama with that half-grin as he did in the first debate as if he can't wait to swing back at him. Candy at it again. Suppose your numbers don't add up? How come she doesn't ask Obama a question about his numbers not adding up on his programs?
Gender equity. Draw. You can tell both candidates didn't want to spend much time on this issue. Contraception? Oooooooook. They both give good answers.
Bush question? Nice one. Romney pretty much avoided it, Obama tried to tie him to Bush but could have done a much better job. Weaker response from him than I expected. Job growth? Sigh. Like saying I've put $10 in your piggy bank but forget I took out $20 so I gave you $10.
Next: I voted for you but not so sure right now. Why should I vote for you? Softball. They both spar with their familiar points. Obama says he kept his promises. Romney comes off sober, pointing out economic stats over the last four years. Doesn't attack him directly "He's tried but...." Nice way to do it. Romney doing a nice job of framing "what the election is all about". Obama will respond to this at some point. Next question.
Damn, this one is pretty hot. Ok, if all illegal immigrants look like her (Not saying she is one or looks like one), I'll drive the bus bringing them over here. Immigration question. Romney says "no amnesty" and "employer verification" but says kids "should have a path". Obama's turn. Starts out with a similar answer. Nice answer by Obama "Thank of this as their country". Nice job of Obama tying Romney to Arizona law. Nice comeback by Romney stating Obama "should honor his promise". Now they are sparring over investments and pensions. This is a section where conservatives will think Romney did a great job although some will think he was too weak while liberals will cheer the President. Candy doing a nice job of moving them on.
Libya? Oh boy, HERE WE GO!!!! Ali-Frazier, 13th round. Obama "that is not how a commander in chief operates". Uh oh. Obama left himself open here. Can Romney take advantage of it? HUGE opening here. Romney says tragedy. Mitt: AN ACT OF WAR IS NOT A TRAGEDY!!! Romney is cautious here. Hitting him with Rice although its a jab. DAMN! Hits him with trip to Vegas. Clinton was in California for fund-raising when Somalia happened. Flew back immediately. Romney going soft on the President here. Should have hit harder on Libya. Candy brings up Hillary. If he stood in the Rose Garden and said we would find out what happened, then why did he and everyone else for several days blame a video instead of waiting for the facts. Oh.... Obama is really attacking here? Offensive? Oh wow. Romney HAS to hit back hard here. Candy is disgraceful here. Romney is shaky here. He is giving it away here. Edge to Obama here.
Keep AK-47's out of the hands of individuals? Nice, fair question. Yup they both give bland "I don't hate the second amendment" answers. Romney discussing unwed birthrate. Does he read JJ? Oh boy, Fast and Furious. Obama will say it started under Bush. Romney needs to be able to refute that one cuz its coming. Candy now jumping in again. Reminding him of his "assault weapons ban" he signed as Governor. Assault weapons are already illegal. Nice jab at Romney "he was before it before he was against it." Ouch. They agree on parents and schools. Obama reads JJ too. Nice. Obama needs to lie and say F&F started under Bush. Now we are arguing over who wants to hire more teacher. Candy trying to cut the President off.
Outsourcing. So far, this debate has been boring. Not like the last two debates. Romney now sounding like an expert on China. Romney picking a currency fight with China. How about picking a currency fight with the Fed. Not once has Romney tied Bernanke to Obama and the effect his zero interest policies have on the economy. Romney mentions regulations but fails to mention why companies go overseas (or to other states) because of regulations. Obama says corporate tax rate is too high and we should close loopholes, lower the rate etc. Um, he said that debating McCain four years ago. Romney doesn't mention that. Obama repeats the foreign tax rate jibe. Third glass of wine. Castle Rock Pinot Noir. Nice and smooth for what it is.
"What do you believe is the biggest misperception the American people have about you?" Romney gives his life history, what is important to him. Sounds sincere. Romney shifts from that to what he will do as President. Don't think he should've done that. Now on to Obama. Interesting. Obama tries to paint himself as a conservative. Nice and moderate. Sounds JUST like a speech made by Huey P. Long. Dead serious. Watched it last night. Nice tip to Romney as a person. NOW Obama uses the 47%. He's been waiting to use this line. Waving the bloody shirt. Grant would be proud. ;-) "Grandfather fought in WWII". Very effective line. Very.
I call it a draw. They both got their points in. Bases will be applauding their efforts. They both went at it. Romney won some rounds, Obama won some rounds. Obama got off the mat, if you are a Republican, Romney carried himself well even when he didn't win the points. No one brought up points made in the VP debate. As I said, I call it a draw.
The Clarion-Ledger published a collection of columns and articles on the school dropout problem in Mississippi. The coverage attacked the problem from several angles: reporting, effect on crime and income, solutions, and the political debate. However, there was one major factor that was completely ignored by everyone in all of these articles.
Not one reporter, not one politician, and not one person quoted in the eleven articles, posts, and essays said a single word about the unwed birthrate. Remember this chart I created and posted earlier this year? That is Mississippi. Let's take a look at Hinds County in the second chart.
Think that is something worth ignoring? These experts and concerned individuals can discuss how to lower the dropout rate all they want but until they address this problem of illegitimate births they are just spinning their wheels in the mud. Nearly 70% of the children born in Hinds County are born without fathers. Nearly 70% of them are thus at a higher risk of failing in school, going to prison, and growing up on the streets. It means more and more children are coming to kindergarten without knowing basic facts such as numbers and colors. More children who receive no home training from parents who don't know how to be parents. Reverend Timothy Stallworth of the Hinds County Youth Court told JJ he was seeing grandparents in their 30's. Children having children having children yet none of them have any idea how to be a parent or raise a child. The children get no discipline, aren't taught how to properly behave in society, and have values instilled by whatever they see on tv. Then we wonder in five to ten years why they are dropping out of school.
Governor Bryant understands this problem and its why he is taking the initiative in addressing the unwed birthrate. Law enforcement officials will say the unwed birthrate is the biggest factor in contributing to crime. The progressives can sneer at this post as they prefer to blow up society and rebuild it in their own dysfunctional image but the fact is a generation growing up without parents is a lost generation. The resources devoted to droput prevention will not be enough as educators and law enforcement will continue to be overwhelmed by a problem that begins at birth.
Monday, October 15, 2012
The Hinds County Board of Supervisors reversed itself and approved the expansion of the Faircloth landfill on Springridge Road in Clinton. However, check out this quote about the landfill from our favorite preacher:
"Think of the (proposed Byram-Clinton) Corridor coming into Clinton up Springridge Road. There's a canopy of beautiful trees. Then there's Deviney Construction, then there's the Tax Commission," said opponent Terri Moore. "Then, you look to the right and this is what you see: a mountain of rubbish."
Make your own comments.
There is a price war going on in the convention business. The Wall Street Journal reported Saturday:
"Across the country, cities are duking it out like never before over conventions, vying to host everyone from the Barbershop Harmony Society to the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry.
Convention-center officials in Boston say they were on track recently to snag a green-building trade show when they got muscled out by Atlanta.
Atlanta lured the group for its 2019 show by offering free rent at its Georgia World Congress Center, said James Rooney, executive director of the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority. He estimated comparable space in Boston would have rented for about $500,000. "At the last minute, they swooped in," Mr. Rooney said.
Georgia's capital city won because it "presented the best value proposition," said Mark Vaughan, chief sales officer for the Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau. He added that he was surprised by Mr. Rooney's comments but declined to comment about sweeteners offered to the group, U.S. Green Build, which also is mum on the details. The Georgia World Congress Center also declined to comment.
The nation's slow-growing economy has hurt attendance. With budgets tight, companies and associations aren't holding as many conventions or sending as many employees or members to them. And a glut of convention space has sharpened the competition among cities.
"If you get one of these events, you're talking about $20 to $30 million in spending in the local economy," Boston's Mr. Rooney says.
Between 2000 and 2011, convention-center exhibit-hall space expanded by 35% nationally while attendance fell 1.7% in the same time, said Heywood Sanders, a professor of public administration at the University of Texas at San Antonio, and an expert on convention centers. Attendance is down 5% since 2007.
Douglas L. Ducate, president and chief executive of the Dallas-based Center for Exhibition Industry Research, has been in the business since 1968. "It's more competitive today than at any time in my career," he says.....
City convention bureaus are undercutting each other with offers of freebies and incentives, such as free banners, breaks on rent and donations to a trade organization's charity. "It's been going on for years, but not at the magnitude that it is today," said Mr. Vaughan in Atlanta.
Some convention centers have added casinos or theaters. In Nevada, the Reno-Sparks Convention and & Visitors Authority is aiming to lure bowling conventions with its sprawling bowling alley only open to convention-goers. "We have the Taj Mahal of bowling," said Christopher Baum, the authority's president.
Mr. Ducate said conventions as a modern industry arose in the 1960s as highways and jet travel made multi-day gatherings economically feasible. The business model that evolved was to build large convention centers as loss leaders, paid for by local government bonds, which thenwere paid off primarily by hotel-occupancy taxes, Mr. Ducate said. The notion was that conventions would generate enough local business to eventually pay for themselves.
Deborah Sexton is president and CEO of the Chicago-based Professional Convention Management Association, an organization of about 6,300 meeting planners and convention and facility managers. "Many cities take this business for granted because it's been coming for years," she said. "It's only when you lose it that you realize its importance."
Business and leisure travel nationally has rebounded since the recession, but travel for conventions, trade shows and similar events, hasn't come back as strongly, said R. Mark Woodworth, president of a hotel market-research company and a member of the board of the Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau.
"In the past, where you might have two or three cities [bidding in] any given year, we're now up to four to six cities wanting to bid. It shows you the cities are hungry," said Dick Holmes, convention director for the American Legion. The group recently picked the Kentucky International Convention Center for its 2017 annual gathering after convention officials in Louisville offered free rent and free office space—and agreed to pay all costs for the organization's annual patriotic parade.
Louisville convention center officials declined to say what they gave the group, but Mr. Holmes estimates the perks add up to more than $300,000 in value. In return, he said, the city gets thousands of "guys and gals" who stay in hotels, dine out, take tours and "might have an adult beverage or two."
Mr. Sanders, the University of Texas professor, predicts the glut of convention space will only get worse, because a number of cities continue to push expansions. He blames cities' hired consultants, who he said predict "all these people are going to come and do wonderful things to your economy."...."
"But the problem is they aren't coming anymore, because there are lots of other convention centers ... that desperately want that business," he said. "So Atlanta steals from Boston, Orlando steals from Chicago and Las Vegas steals from everywhere." Article
Madison Mayor Mary Hawkins-Butler sparred with the Madison County Board of Supervisors over the Parkway East and Parkway South bailouts two weeks ago. Madison County made two bond payments in 2011 of $258,328 on May 11 for the Parkway South and $374,021 on October 24 for the Parkway East Public Improvement Districts after they sent a notice of default. The two PID's sold nearly $40 million in bonds to finance construction of the Galleria Parkway. The Mayor questioned the legality of the Supervisors making the bond payments for the Parkway East and South public improvement districts. Needless to say, supervisors and their attorneys did not agree with her assessment of the bailout.
Board attorney Mike Espy said the payments were legal because they are a loan. The Madison County Journal reported last week: "Board of Supervisors Attorney Mike Espy called the payment a short-term loan to the PIDs and said if not repaid after two years the county has the "probability and certainly the ability to step back" and terminate the contribution agreements unless the PIDs reimburse the county."
Mr. Espy repeatedly called the bailout a loan. He said it was legal for the county to make loans under the contribution agreement. Former board attorney Eric Hamer said the bondholders would sue the county if the payments were not made. Just one problem with Mr. Espy's assertions. He can call this bailout a loan all day but the payments posted below were made directly to Hancock Bank from Madison County. Hancock Bank is the paying agent for the bonds. Earlier post on whether payments were a loan.
The contribution agreement Mr. Espy cites did not say anything about a loan but instead said "the county shall advance to the trustee the outstanding amount required to satisfy the deficient debt service payment" (Page 3 of the Parkway East contribution agreement.). Issuing statement
It does not matter if the bailouts are a "loan" anyway because the Mississippi Code had something to say about counties making bond payments for PIDs last year:
"The issuance of bonds under the provisions of this chapter shall not directly, indirectly or contingently obligate the state or any governmental unit of the state to levy any taxes or to make any appropriation for their payment arising out of contracts authorized under this chapter."
"Any appropriation". Expenditure. Spending. Outlay. Grant. Even Loan. It doesn't matter what term is used, paying for those bonds is a spending of money on behalf of the PID and was banned by Section 19-31-29. Even though the law was changed this year to permit counties to make bond payments under contribution agreements, the new law is not retroactive. It is the contention of this website the 2011 payments were illegal as the law banned all appropriations for making bond payments on behalf of PIDs.
Mr. Espy argues they are legal because the agreement did not obligate the "full faith and credit" of the county. He also says Section 19-31-17 allows the PID to obtain revenue from "all sources". However, no one is disputing the ability of Parkway East and Parkway South to receive money from the county. The issue is what does Section 19-31-29 say about PID bailouts and it makes it clear the county can not spend any money on bond payments for PIDs. Thus the contribution agreement and the 2011 bond payments were a direct violation of the law at the time.
Are bond payments illegal
More on the Parkway bond payments. Its not a loan
Editorial: No tax increase for Madison County
Note: One interesting observation. Board President John Bell Crosby voted against the tax increase but was mighty silent. Here is a good piece of advice to the Board President. If you're going to vote against tax increases, then you better lead the fight against them if you want to win your little election next year. Just saying you voted for it won't be enough. Madison is not Jackson.
Sunday, October 14, 2012
Politico published a long story a week ago on some changes in the Romney campaign. Interesting piece and they are not really changes but a changing of levels of influence. Some excerpts:
"For months, Ann Romney and her eldest son, Tagg, were dutifully supportive of the political professionals running Mitt Romney’s campaign. All the while, their private frustration was mounting.
Shortly before the first debate, it finally boiled over.
What followed was a family intervention. The candidate’s family prevailed on Mitt Romney, and the campaign operation, to shake things up dramatically, according to campaign insiders. The family pushed for a new message, putting an emphasis on a softer and more moderate image for the GOP nominee — a “let Mitt be Mitt” approach they believed more accurately reflected the looser, generous and more approachable man they knew.
Chief strategist Stuart Stevens — whom the family held responsible for allowing Romney’s personal side to be obscured by an anti-Obama economic message — has seen his once wide-ranging portfolio “fenced in” to mainly the debates, and the television advertising that is his primary expertise, according to campaign officials. Tagg Romney, channeling his mother’s wishes, is taking a much more active role in how the campaign is run.
The family rebellion, long building despite Mitt Romney’s initial reluctance to change, reached a climax in September, amid mounting evidence that the status quo was doomed to failure. The course correction came after internal polls showed him losing nearly every swing state and a loud chorus of second-guessing among prominent conservatives....
This story is based on campaign sources with direct knowledge of the events. The sources insisted on anonymity in order to discuss internal disputes and operations.
When the history of this campaign is written, the family intervention will be among the most important turning points in the Romney saga. Until the weeks before the first presidential debate, the candidate sided with Stevens over his family’s skepticism, accepting the strategist’s view that the best way to win was to point out President Barack Obama’s flaws and articulate generic promises to do better....." Article
Friday, October 12, 2012
Circuit Judge Richard McKenzie (Retired) denied Hinds County Election Commissioner Bobbie Graves' request to be placed on the November ballot. Ms. Graves filed her qualifying papers with the Chancery Clerk one day after the deadline. The Hinds County Board of Supervisors refused to place her on the ballot after receiving an opinion from the Attorney General stating she had not qualified for the race on time. Here is the ruling:
Here are the latest crime stats:
Jackson crime stats for week ending September 16, 2012.
Jackson crimes overview for week ending September 16, 2012 .
August 2012 report for the Reservoir area
City of Madison crime reports through October 9, 2012.
Byram crime reports through September 29, 2012.
You read the headline correctly. Obama campaign spokeswoman Stephanie Cutter said the only reason Libya was an issue was because of Romney:
STEPHANIE CUTTER: In terms of the politicization of this — you know, we are here at a debate, and I hope we get to talk about the debate — but the entire reason this has become the political topic it is, is because of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan. It’s a big part of their stump speech. And it’s reckless and irresponsible what they’re doing.
BROOKE BALDWIN: But, Stephanie, this is national security. As we witnessed this revolution last year, we covered it–
CUTTER: It is absolutely national security–
BALDWIN: –it is absolutely pertinent. People in the American public absolutely have a right to get answers.
Romney had something to say about that:
MITT ROMNEY: I think today we got another indication of how President Obama and his campaign fail to grasp the seriousness of the challenge that we face here in America. His campaign said this today about the Benghazi terrorist attack—they said this, and I quote, “The entire reason this has become the political topic it is, is because of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan.” No, President Obama, it’s an issue because this is the first time in 33 years that an United States ambassador has been assassinated. Mr. President, this is an issue because we were attacked successfully by terrorists on the anniversary of 9/11. President Obama, this is an issue because Americans wonder why it was it took so long for you and your administration to admit that this was a terrorist attack. This is a very serious issue. These are very serious questions and the American people deserve serious answers and I hope they come soon.
Then Ms. Cutter doubled down:
No, Miss Cutter, it wasn't Romney who asked for security and didn't get it. It wasn't Romney who denied requests from security teams to stay in Libya. It wasn't Romney who went on every single sunday morning news show and said it was a mob outraged by a Youtube video no one ever saw. It wasn't Romney who went on David Letterman and blamed videos. It wasn't Romney who said it was an angry mob when the cameras showed there was no mob. It wasn't Romney who waited several weeks to send an FBI team to examine the consulate in Libya. It wasn't Romney who decided to go party with Jay-Z or fund-raise in Vegas while this was going down. It wasn't Romney who basically called the Libyan President a liar when he said it was a terrorist act and there was no mob. Meanwhile the NBC reporterette tried to badger him into admitting it was a mob outraged by a video to no avail. In fact, the only people pushing the angry mob that couldn't handle Youtube was the Obama administration yet its all Romney's fault.
What the Obama administration SHOULD have done was say "we don't know what happened in Libya, we are investigating and trying to find out what happened. When we do, we will take action and bring these terrorists to justice. We want to thank the Libyan government for helping us and will provide you more information as it becomes available." That's it. Nice, simple, professional.
The Obama administration for whatever reason freaked and pushed the Arab Street angle knowing it was a lie. Now they are trying to blame the intelligence community i.e. Petraeus and Panetta. Good luck with that one. There is more to come out on this story and it won't be pretty. The last thing the Obama people need during a re-election campaign is "Obama lied after his ambassador died" but he is going to get it at the rate this is going.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Going to live-blog the debate tonight. I don't expect either candidate to crush the other. Get Joe off the stump and into a more controlled setting, he tends to do better. Ryan will know his facts well to take it and give it right back. If Ryan's age is brought up, he should just say his age was fine when Clinton or Obama were elected. When someone is expected to crush the other in a debate, the reverse usually happens. Think Perot-Gore and Kemp-Gore. Just opened the wine. This should be fun. Good luck to both sides. We all want the same thing: Saturday Night Live to get some really good material tonight.
Time to get started.
Biden kicks off. Let the games begin and we who are about to die salute you. DAMN. Starts off with Libya. Biden calls this a tragedy? No, a tragedy is an illness, natural disaster, a wreck, not an act of war. Biden gets off Libya quickly and moves on to other foreign policy attacking Romney. Wonder if Ryan will say "I don't blame him for getting off the subject so quickly". Ryan's turn. Going through the timeline and slamming them on using the Youtube excuse. Wonder if Donna Ladd will say he is lying. Damn. Ryan asks if we should have the Marines in Libya. Joe flashes that goofy grin. Biden keeps smiling. and almost laughing. Not smart. People see Americans dying in Libya and have a bunch of questions after seeing the stories change daily. Last thing they want to see is laughter or grins.
"Bet against America all the time"? First real punch Biden throws. Get ready. It will be like this all night. Biden now blaming the intel community and saying "we weren't told they wanted more security"? Moderator says that's enough, lets move to Iran. One guy is being serious, one guy is laughing on camera. Biden says the sanctions are the most crippling ever. True or a Biden um, "truth"? Biden explaining the nuclear process. Sounds more like an expert now. He should stay like this all night. Both are making good points here. I'm going to call the Iran part a draw. Now Biden is mocking him while Ryan is talking. Not a good idea. Ryan giving him a pass on sanctions. Yes, the sanctions cripple Iran BUT the Republican Guard and the Ayatollahs are just fine just like the elite in North Korea are. Doesn't make that point. Now on to the economy.
How long will it take to get unemployment under six percent? Dumb question. I'm sure there is a timeline for such things. Every stock analyst would love to predict that one. Biden FINALLY brings up the 47%. Now he is defending the common man and showing outrage towards Romney. Um, Grover Norquist? Joe, most Americans won't know who he is. Damn. Biden just attacked him. Clearly rehearsed but made his points. And now undoing it with that stupid mocking grin. Ryan jabs back with current economic facts. OH DAMN. Ryan brought up Romney's giving to Obama's and Biden. Surprised he went there. It just got personal. Oh boy, now we are comparing personal giving and tragedies. Was hoping we wouldn't go here.
Biden getting him good on asking for stimulus money for constituents. Ryan has a problem here and Biden is going to get his money here. Ryan is not answering that directly besides saying "we do it for all constituents". Ryan better get control here or else it gets away from him. Score this one for Biden. Now on to Medicare and health care.
Joe showing off the pearly whites while Ryan talks again. Not smart. Joe going after the $716 billion claim. Everyone at MSNBC finally yelling "ABOUT DAMN TIME!!!" Medicare does NOT go insolvent in 2016. Will Ryan get him there? Where would their money be if in the market? Um Joe, the market came back. Joe keeps cutting him off. Ryan needs to just confront him. He just did. Ryan needs to stand up to Biden more. Biden keeps trying to cut him off and take over the debate. Ryan should just stop him completely and say "Mr. Vice-President, you are better than that and the American people expect better from you." Street fighter in Joe comes out, Ryan comes off a little wonkish.
Time for taxes. Biden makes predictable argument. Millionaires contribute more. Spare the middle class, etc. Ryan makes good point about how money of "the rich" can only pay for so much. Ryan spouting numbers while Biden spouts cliches on taxes. Biden wanting to show off his teeth so bad yup, he did it again. Moderator tells Ryan he refuses to release specifics about tax plan. Ryan being vague here. Ryan could point out he wants to imitate what the Dems and R's did in 1986 with the bi-partisan tax reform act. Biden uses Reagan against Ryan. Nice move. Now uses hedge funds against Ryan. Not bad. Now he brings up capital gains "loophole". Opening their for Ryan but will he use it? Your Iphone was paid for with capital gains tax cuts for example. Now tries to scare people with losing the housing deduction. "Now your'e Jack Kennedy", Ryan, use Reagan's line and say exactly, you left the regular people by going to the left." Biden is going to blow this with his unprofessional behavior. He did a much better job debating Palin. Time for defense and Afghanistan.
Biden finally brings up Osama Bin Laden. Soberly defends policy of withdrawal in 2014. This is Biden at his best. Ryan says they want the "transition" to be successful but says foreign policy is unraveling overseas. Doesn't point out the Afghan soldiers turning on us. However, she brings it up. Biden really missing it here on Iraq, deadline made things worse, the surge cured it. How much longer will we spend on Afghanistan? She has now control of the debate. Gloves are off. He tried to mix it up with Biden but Biden got ahead on that one.
Now on to Syria. Biden starts out strong with his area and gives specific information on Syria itself. Good point: Last thing America needs is a ground war in the Middle East. America is war weary and he knows it and doesn't mind playing to it. I'm calling this one a draw so far. They both got their jabs in. Ryan trying to have serious debate. Biden does at times, but then ruins it with bouts of unpresidential behavior.
Abortion? Red meat for the bases. Ryan says oppose abortion with exceptions for rape and life of mother. Now moves to freedom of religion argument and plays to the Catholic vote. Ironic as both are Catholics. Biden points out he is a Catholic and how it influences his doctrine. Biden says he is pro-life personally but refuses to impose it on others and says politically he is pro-choice. Now take up the "assault on the Catholic Church". Says the Church is not forced to pay for or provide contraception. Opening for Ryan but now attempts to drive wedge between Romney and Ryan. Ryan goes back to Catholic Church. "Why would they keep suing you"? Oops, moderator cuts in, um yeah. Biden now uses Supreme Court appointments here. Interesting. Usually its the Republicans who use Supreme Court appointments as a campaign issue. Now for the close.
Moderator brings up negative tone of campaign and asks if they are embarrassed. You first, Joe. This debate is going like I expected. Close to a draw. Nice close by Ryan. Now comes the fear tactics by Biden. Good time to use it when response time is limited. Ryan finally has enough and jumps in. Moderator stops him, something she didn't do when Biden did it repeatedly.
Closing time. Ryan brings up "honesty". Joe whines about who gets more time. Biden makes closing statements while looking awar from the camera most of the time. He says he is "frustrated" over the 47% comments and now brings in his mom and dad. Ryan states economic numbers and goes to the "things are not working theme." One goes for personal anecdotes, one goes for logic and economics.
Hmmm.... who won this one? Draw. Biden muddied the waters a good bit with his claims and at times very unprofessional behavior. Ryan made good points and got jabs in but didn't have good answers for several points Biden made such as the stimulus grants. Biden had a minute or so more time than Ryan. Yes, the moderator interrupted Ryan more than Biden but Ryan didn't stand up to Ryan as much as he could have either. Sometimes you just have to try and take over, something Biden understood all too well but then ruined it. Ryan came off as a very serious person, not an out of control ideologue as the Democrats would like to paint him to be. I think Biden is going to take a beating tomorrow over Libya comments. Prediction: little effect on the race.
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Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).
Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.
Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".
In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.
In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.
Trollfest '09 is a pet-friendly event as well. Feel free to bring your dog with you and do not worry if your pet gets hungry, as employees of the Jackson Zoo will be on hand to provide some of their animals as food when it gets to be feeding time for your little loved one.
Relax at the Fox News Tent. Since there are only three blonde reporters in Jackson (being blonde is a requirement for working at Fox News), Megan and Kathryn from WAPT and Wendy from WLBT will be on loan to Fox. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both and a torn-up Obama yard sign will entitle you to free drinks served by Megan, Wendy, and Kathryn. Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required. Just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '09 is for EVERYONE!!!
This is definitely a Beaver production.
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There will be a hugging booth where in exchange for your young son, Frank Melton will give you a loooong hug. Trollfest will have a dunking booth where Muhammed the terrorist will curse you to Allah as you try to hit a target that will drop him into a vat of pig grease. However, in the true spirit of Separate But Equal, Don Imus and someone from NE Jackson will also sit in the dunking booth for an equal amount of time. Tom Head will give a reading for two hours on why he can't figure out who the hell he is. Cliff Cargill will give lessons with his .80 caliber desert eagle, using Frank Melton photos as targets. Tackleberry will be on hand for an autograph session. KIM Waaaaaade will be passing out free titles and deeds to crackhouses formerly owned by The Wood Street Players.
If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!
This is definitely a Beaver production.
Note: Security provided by INS.