Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Ole Miss Professsor & Journalist Joe Atkins Critiques Mississippi Republicans and it Ain't Pretty

Mississippi journalist and journalism professor at the University of Mississippi has a column posted at the Jackson Free Press.

You can read the entire column HERE.  Some of the rants and raves (mostly rants) are about:

Mississippi Republicans and Gov Phil Bryant:
  • Look at Mississippi under Republican grass-eater rule in both the governor's mansion and state Legislature. A lopsided tax system that favors corporations and the rich has contributed to one of the biggest income gaps between the rich and poor of any state in the country. 
Republican House Speaker Phillip Gunn:
  •  Mississippi House Speaker Philip Gunn's solution? Phase out the state income tax and the $1.7 billion in state revenue it provides.
    Thank goodness House Democrats killed Gunn's plan and prevented Mississippi from becoming another Kansas, where Republicans succeeded and nearly wrecked the state's budget while flat-lining its economy.
Missisippi's Prison System:
  •  Corruption at the highest levels and medieval conditions within its private prisons have the system's reputation in shambles. 
Missisippi Public Schools & Funding:

  •  Once again, the state Legislature ended its most recent session underfunding public schools, this time by $211 million under rules it set for itself in the Mississippi Adequate Education Program (MAEP). Initiative 42 is an effort to fix this. Quite clearly, a grass-eating core within the Republican Party wants to privatize public education. Charter schools and vouchers are merely Trojan horses in that cause. 
In the end, Atkins makes a plea for Initiative 42:
  •  Mississippi voters have a chance to change things next election. Will they vote for Initiative 42 and for politicians who serve rather than oppose their interests? I'm hoping, but I'm not placing any bets.