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Gibson writes: "Mississippi has proved to us all that austerity, or the political ideology of "government living within its means," is a farce."

Mississippi chose Nissan over its children. (photo: Shutterstock.com)
Mississippi chose Nissan over its children. (photo: Shutterstock.com)


Mississippi Cuts $1.3 Billion from Schools, Gives $1.3 Billion to Nissan

By Carl Gibson, Reader Supported News

23 July 14

 

ississippi has proved to us all that austerity, or the political ideology of “government living within its means,” is a farce. All austerity means is taking money away from public services, and giving it to private business. Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant and the GOP-led legislature illustrated that perfectly in two ways.

Since 2008, Mississippi has violated a constitutional mandate to adequately fund the state’s public K-12 schools. The Mississippi Adequate Education Program, or MAEP, was established in 1997 to make sure a proper portion of taxes went to fund schools. A community’s ad valorem taxes will cover up to 27 percent of the cost, while the state covers the rest. The state’s contribution is essentially the base student cost times the daily attendance in a certain school district. The mandated amount would be readjusted every five years for inflation. Mississippi has spent $648 less per student than it did in 2008. Currently, Mississippi has underfunded its public schools by at least $1.3 billion.

In May of last year, the United Auto Workers released a study showing that Nissan’s Canton, Mississippi, plant was getting $1.33 billion in tax breaks from the state in return for Nissan’s promise to provide Mississippians with good-paying, full-time jobs. $850 million in tax breaks would be spaced out over a 30-year period, with $400 million in cash aid. Mississippi would even pay $90 million in interest on the debt incurred to reward Nissan with its lavish tax breaks. Mississippi has already given $378 million to Nissan, which paid for its access roads, water usage, and worker training. Nissan also gets to keep $160 million in income taxes from workers over the next 25 years, which would normally have gone to Mississippi’s public programs. No employer has gotten that sweet a deal from any state government.

However, out of all 5,200 workers at Nissan’s Canton plant, most of them are employed by temp agencies. Regular, full-time employees are paid over $23 per hour and have benefits, but the temp workers at the Canton plant are often hired for just half that amount, given no healthcare, retirement, benefits, or paid time off, and have very little job security. The automaker has even issued a 5-year wage freeze for its Mississippi workers even as the company pocketed $3.3 billion in profit last year. Nissan likes to brag that it never lays people off, yet they don’t count temp workers who have been let go. While many other Nissan plants have unionized workforces, Nissan has indirectly threatened to close its Mississippi plant for good and move out of state if its workers organize.

While Mississippi is paying for a giant chunk of Nissan’s subsidies with the exact amount of money it cut from schools in the last six years, the state is actually following a nationwide trend. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a nonprofit think tank, most states are funding schools even less than they used to before the global recession, which officially ended in 2009. Out of the 35 states following this trend, ten of those states have cut education by more than 10 percent. And despite modest increases in their tax revenues, 15 states are providing less funding per student than they did last year.

Nor is Nissan alone in their greed-inspired quest for huge tax breaks without fulfilling their promises to create jobs. A New York Times database from 2012 shows that over 150,000 state-based tax handouts to private businesses amount to $80.4 billion each year. Many of these corporations, like General Motors, took these handouts, and then shuttered operations a short time later. New Jersey governor Chris Christie has awarded over $2 billion in tax incentives during his tenure. That’s more under just one governor than in the combined tenures of all of New Jersey’s governors since 1996. But despite the handouts to corporations, New Jersey’s job growth is still lagging behind the rest of the nation. As of December of 2012, New Jersey had only restored half of the private sector jobs lost since the start of the recession.

States all over should have already realized that since globalization has sent manufacturing jobs overseas, real job growth lies in highly-skilled, technical industries. And to attract those employers, a state needs to have an educated workforce ready to take on those jobs. Unless states stop the disturbing trend of cutting education funding in favor of giving big tax breaks to any corporation that asks for them, their economies will only get worse.



Carl Gibson, 27, is co-founder of US Uncut, a nonviolent grassroots movement that mobilized thousands to protest corporate tax dodging and budget cuts in the months leading up to Occupy Wall Street. Carl and other US Uncut activists are featured in the documentary We're Not Broke, which premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. Carl is also the author of How to Oust a Congressman, an instructional manual on getting rid of corrupt members of Congress and state legislatures based on his experience in the 2012 elections in New Hampshire. He lives in Sacramento, California.

Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News.

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+89 # tswhiskers 2014-07-23 09:06
Here is just more proof the the Reps. and their wealthy supporters want to make and keep the general populace poor and ignorant. It's not as if MS is the first state to cut education money in favor of business. The state doesn't even bother to hide its intention to hire temp workers so they can be easily fired later. They TRULY want to make the U.S. into a 3rd World country like most of South America so they can control ALL of the money in the world's economy and let the poor get along as they can.
 
 
+42 # HowardMH 2014-07-23 11:01
tswhiskers, MS has been a 3rd world county for ever, once you leave the Golf Coast area along highway 90.
 
 
+48 # dsepeczi 2014-07-23 12:15
Quoting tswhiskers:
Here is just more proof the the Reps. and their wealthy supporters want to make and keep the general populace poor and ignorant.


That seems to be part of the grand plan. In short, I've been reading about jobs being moved overseas, national layoffs and paycuts, defunding of education, opposition to abortion and contraception, big tax breaks for business and we start wars whenever and where ever so much as a firecracker goes off. Wall Street is making record profits while world governments and most of it's citizens are going broke. Now their trying to do away with net neutrality to control the flow of information and the NSA is in on every phone call and email we send. My conclusion ? The powers that be are looking to take control over the whole world as soon as possible. By keeping future generations poor, broke and stupid, they have lots of meat for the grinder as they offer the miltary as the only prospect for most people to survive. "Kill for us and you and your family will get by, albeit in impoverished conditions, until you die. Refuse and you'll starve. Attempt to stir up trouble and educate people to what's really going on, and you'll be jailed and/or executed."
 
 
+19 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2014-07-23 14:29
I drive a Nissan. This article reminded me to not buy another one. Would we expect anything else from a red neck state?
 
 
-4 # RLF 2014-07-24 06:03
We all know how bad NY schools are and they just gave Colbert Show a billion dollars of tax incentives to stay in NY.

Why don't the governors do something useful and get together to sign a treaty to not give away the farm to businesses coming into their states. I'm so tired of getting robbed by big business.
 
 
+2 # bingers 2014-07-25 11:59
No funding should ever be withheld from schools, but to compare New York schools with Mississippi schools is a joke. The average NY slum school is probably superior to 90% of all Mississippi schools.
 
 
+10 # MainStreetMentor 2014-07-24 08:17
“Tax breaks” are a major incentive used by cities/counties to lure businesses into their communities. These breaks are usually limited by calendar date limitations. What these cities/communit ies DO NOT do is insert penalties in their contracted agreements with these companies. For instance, if a company has a “tax breaker” term limited to 10 years, there needs to be a penalty clause that says (in effect), if the company essential business leaves/moves/va cates the area, all the “back taxes” due to the tax incentives become due and owing on the date of the announced move. Similarly, company promises of hiring an amount of employees from the local area, need their contract to stipulate that “part-time” or “non-permanent” workers can NOT be included in that count. These kinds of practices are considered “community employment insurance”. Community developers, hired by the cities/counties to bring business into their communities almost NEVER include those penalties. City councils/city managers/admini strators need to assure that those penalties ARE included within ALL contracts for incoming businesses.
 
 
+25 # cordleycoit 2014-07-23 09:24
You should never allow education to get in the way of a back hander. "Mississippi Goddamned!"
 
 
+71 # reiverpacific 2014-07-23 09:33
How very Deep-Dixie, "Keep 'em dumb, cheap, desperate, pissed-off at each other and the other, submissive and compliant".
I guess that Mississippi is actually leading the nation in this way at least -what a distinction!
If the TeaThuglicans get their nefarious ways, the whole country will follow as it is trending already.
But plenty for the Wall Street, Big banks, Corporate welfare and the Military.
I call it "creeping Feudalism".
 
 
+37 # Malcolm 2014-07-23 11:29
Sorry to say, Reiverpacific, that this attitude is not restricted to the Deep Souf. My son was blown away by a County Commissioner candidate's campaign promise, right there in Longview, WA, when my son used to live there. He promised to save residents money by "getting rid of" college prep courses in the area highschool(s?). Here's the logic: "those kids don't need to attend college. They can get perfectly good jobs at Longview Fiber".

Here in Orygon-I must admit-there's a similar attitude, but it's a bit more subtle.

All over the country, it seems, the powers that be want WORKER DRONES, not 'dem trubble makin' overedicaded THINKERS!
 
 
+17 # reiverpacific 2014-07-23 11:49
Quoting Malcolm:
Sorry to say, Reiverpacific, that this attitude is not restricted to the Deep Souf. My son was blown away by a County Commissioner candidate's campaign promise, right there in Longview, WA, when my son used to live here. He promised to save residents money but "getting rid of" college prep courses in the area highschool(s?). Here's the logic: "those kids don't need to attend college. They can get perfectly good jobs at Longview Fiber".

Here in Orygon-I must admit-there's a similar attitude, but it's a bit more subtle.

All over the country, it seems, the powers that be want WORKER DRONES, not 'dem trubble makin' overedicaded THINKERS!


I'm very sorry to hear that -but being familiar with Longview-Kelso, it doesn't surprise me. And as I noted, it's trending nationally. But from my personal experience, it's predominant in Dixie, like everything regressive. I'm glad that my daughter got back to Oregon before she started High School but she quit college after two years as she felt like she was spinning her wheels and not really getting a quality education with personal attention from tutors.
She's now well on her way to being a full chef in Madison Wisconsin and loves it.
I wish you luck.
 
 
+16 # Malcolm 2014-07-23 13:38
I grew up in the south, although not the Deep South. I agree that there's no place quite as backwards as that area.

And about Longview? What can I say, other than I'm glad my boy left.
 
 
+16 # jsluka 2014-07-23 13:57
This is also trending globally or internationally ; same thing is occurring in New Zealand and Australia, for example.
 
 
+62 # RMDC 2014-07-23 09:35
This is how empires decline and collapse. It is not just Mississippi. It is all over the US. The central government makes the same decisons. It transfers money to the oligarchs (like Nissan) from social programs and infrastructure. Any sane politicians would know the mantra "invest in people." This means social programs like schools, healthcare, sports, libraries, and all the things that make people grow and develop as human beings. In this way, people actually become more productive and better workers. Germany and Japan understand this.

Nissan is in Mississippi because of law wages and the absense of regulations protecting workers and the environments. So Mississippi and many other states are funding the looting of the lives of their people. This is how empires die. In fact, they deserve to die. when the US no longer exists, people can begin to rebuild. Let' hope they learn a lesson and build socialism rather than capitalism.
 
 
+35 # PCPrincess 2014-07-23 09:44
Agreed - and.. as is already happening, the U.S. will not only bleed out jobs via corporate greed, but it will bleed out some of it's own talented citizens as they begin to migrate to fairer, more just, healthier, and happier countries.
 
 
0 # RLF 2014-07-24 06:06
I have several friends who have left the building permanently. Maybe time...no relief on the horizon...just more rep. and dem. corporate stooges.
 
 
+22 # rockieball 2014-07-23 10:41
Can you comprehend what the south would be like if they had won the Civil War? It would be dumb people caring guns, spouting the bible and wanting to bomb and kill anyone that did not agree with them. McCain would be their President for life.
 
 
+16 # RMDC 2014-07-23 19:53
rockieball -- I think the South did win the civil war. The US is filled with dumb people carrying guns, spouting the bible and wanting to bomb and kill anyone that did not agree with them.

You know McCain's family was Southern military officers from Mississippi. After the war, they moved north and got into the US military and everyone of them has been just like the first -- Southern warmongers.
 
 
+45 # Caliban 2014-07-23 09:39
A state government as stupid and mean-spirited as GOP dominated North Carolina? Where else but in Mississippi?
 
 
+23 # Miamisburgistheim 2014-07-23 10:45
TO BE INCLUDED:
Texas, after 16 years of complete Republican rule, Governor, Legislature, Supreme Court has developed a GOP designed program to handle needs of medicare, education, public health, colleges, old folks, and unskilled.

It is the official "Ignore It, and give em what the got last year" approach. And extra money is used for the governor's fund to support business new to the state. Texas got Toyota which built a large truck plant in San Antonio, the state paid for the roads, trained much of the staff at state cost, recruited their workers for them, gave them property tax relief, and make sure the local county and city governments give them something either tax free, or tax reduced.
 
 
+13 # Texas Aggie 2014-07-23 13:19
And it goes without saying that the good gov. Goodhair got a rather large "donation" to his campaign chest from Toyota prior to them getting their fingers on all the largess.
 
 
+30 # chemtex2611 2014-07-23 09:49
Politicians in Mississippi must wake every day and give thanks for Rick Perry. He keeps them from looking so bad.

They need to order some of those Air Force GI glasses and some fancy cowboy boots.
 
 
+23 # angryspittle 2014-07-23 10:23
Cuz we just ain't stoopid enuf yet..........
 
 
+4 # RMDC 2014-07-23 19:54
don't they spell it 'nuff?
 
 
+24 # rockieball 2014-07-23 10:38
And yet the stupid red necked southerners will continue to shoot themselves and their children in the foot by voting for the GOP.
 
 
+18 # MJnevetS 2014-07-23 11:45
Quoting rockieball:
And yet the stupid red necked southerners will continue to shoot themselves and their children in the foot by voting for the GOP.

#rockieball - I know attorneys in these southern states who are intelligent, ethical and fighting for the rights of their neighbors. The problem isn't 'southerners' any more than "the problem is (blacks, jews, muslims, women, foreigners, etc. (fill in the blank))" There has been a concerted effort by a few to affect the rights of all. i.e. when there is a GOP legislative majority, redistricting along partisan lines to create a permanent super-majority. It is this type of blatant criminal conduct which has caused many of these states to no longer be under democratic (by a majority of citizens) rule. Further, it is not only the South where this has occurred. Don't blame a whole demographic when what has actually occurred is a theft.
 
 
+8 # tswhiskers 2014-07-23 13:25
Possibly you forget the legions of Fox News viewers. I volunteer at my Chamber of Commerce and both of the people who run it are solid Reps. in large part because that is where they get their news. They think I'M cracked. It wasn't until 2012 that much of the public even woke up to what the Reps. had done to them. Until enough Reps. can be turned into Independents or otherwise sensible voters, the Rep. Party with continue to win enough elections to allow them to think their policies can take over the country.
 
 
+1 # tswhiskers 2014-07-23 13:25
Possibly you forget the legions of Fox News viewers. I volunteer at my Chamber of Commerce and both of the people who run it are solid Reps. in large part because that is where they get their news. They think I'M cracked. It wasn't until 2012 that much of the public even woke up to what the Reps. had done to them. Until enough Reps. can be turned into Independents or otherwise sensible voters, the Rep. Party with continue to win enough elections to allow them to think their policies can take over the country.
 
 
+9 # suzyskier 2014-07-23 14:04
Quoting rockieball:
And yet the stupid red necked southerners will continue to shoot themselves and their children in the foot by voting for the GOP.

Maybe that

Maybe that is what he GOP planned all along, dumb down the citizens by taking away funds for education and they will follow us like the mice did to the Pied Piper. They probably consider the citizens mice anyways.
 
 
+26 # Cdesignpdx 2014-07-23 10:45
Time to repeal tax exempt status from churches and turn the revenue over to our public schools. Also, we need to put a ceiling on administrator salaries.
 
 
+19 # Philothustra 2014-07-23 10:46
In Mississippi the public schools are all virtually all black. Typical is the Jackson Miss school district, 2nd largest in the state, at 97.5 black and 1.8 percent white.

You figure it out, honky.
 
 
+20 # Vardoz 2014-07-23 10:49
This is out and out overt criminal corruption. It is this kind of theft that is destroying our nation and waging genocide on our Black citizens!!!!

This is why people must converge on that state house in big numbers every Monday to voice their outrage. These people are uncivilized, ruthless bastards and need to be kicked out.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l-IV6kKWr1Q&ytsession=mWp7duHzf58yHMZBtn0Zr4zLFXn2Fh1-13o6yLpnFTMyP_J8Kfj833CpEQOhTG5GTcQ9YZLjakm6VwOKzmkXheB4l1G2sEbOkbeLpxLgD8B8ach049i5lzvnwxskfmNt5TLyuA7Fa-cocpT9Kbzy3S4NT7bcP7pKFQG_x8-nNSACy-qM7JrEvDoet-e_IT6FHUeS1M5K3-7gsh8-ioM9CDCyNo76NnRyE0Wgo0Z5z7fJhrKpZf4aeNL6cvXXhpLSrrTbv1N-eSWz3h0CvBj3uqlMC4O4BDw-RUYpJPywLSj20hNIoumSU-OhUBqzqXjBh1-aTvN1JKU
 
 
+14 # bobaka 2014-07-23 11:05
Rage and anger aside, people must understand that the lie that they matter is no longer part of the public discourse of the elites. They have constructed a two tier society: loyalist dupes and terrorist rebels.The rebels are to be liquidated and are being on a daily basis through induced disease. All corporate production is laced with poisons to kill you and therefore solve the problem of so many extant slaves who will not accept submission as their lot in life. So, since indoctrination has broken down, the solution of the elites, simply, is to kill you and they have many many ways to do so without you knowing it is happening.Ignor ance kills. Mass ignorance kills many. Police murders kill the visible who act out as desperation increases everywhere.The bourgeois classes are circling their wagons and mining the approaches. The fascist whites are total racists--neo-na zis--and that more people in the U.S. are not white makes the white power structure erupt in psychotic aggression. Race wars.
 
 
+12 # Jaylu 2014-07-23 11:11
I submit for your inspection Chuck Thompson's "Better Off Without 'Em", in which he makes a compelling argument for letting the South go be its own country. He also details the obscene amounts of money spent by many southern states to subsidize auto manufacturers. Take a look at Detroit now. That was deliberate. And he is clear that so many black children do not need or deserve to be treated this way! I'm ready to say goodbye.
 
 
-32 # HenryS1 2014-07-23 11:13
If you do the numbers, it might very well make sense for Mississippi to do as it does. The tax break shortfall money to Nissan may come back to the state immediately in payroll tax revenue, while the education benefits payoff may be longer and uncertain.

Articles like this should involve a bit more thinking and analysis, if they want to educate rather than just get people riled up. The Nissan tax break deserves a rational analysis by itself, as to whether it makes financial sense for the state. Maybe it does, maybe it doesn't. You can't really tell from this article. It assumes that Nissan is getting too good a deal, but that isn't really substantiated. Equating the tax break of the Nissan deal and the education shortfall needs to be justified better to make any sense.
 
 
+21 # bobaka 2014-07-23 11:31
My tax money is subsidizing the elites who hate me and I have no recourse since the bureaucrats are all corporate shills. I don't want one cent spent to subsidize any business period. No commoner wants tax money stolen in this way.
 
 
+13 # Texas Aggie 2014-07-23 13:27
But then again if you do the numbers, it might make no sense at all. Since most of the employees will be temps rather than full time and making only a fraction of full-time workers, the amount that MS gets in taxes from them won't be worth the effort to collect them. In addition, the very existence of the workers is going to cost the state something in the way of road maintenance, sewage treatment, utility provision, etc. and it is very possible that those extra costs will be less than what is paid in taxes by someone making just a fraction over minimum wage.
 
 
+10 # pegasus4508 2014-07-23 18:43
What payroll taxes? Did you read the article?
"Nissan also gets to keep $160 million in income taxes from workers over the next 25 years, which would normally have gone to Mississippi’s public programs. No employer has gotten that sweet a deal from any state government."
Which means the actual state INCOME tax the employees would have paid will be KEPT by Nissan.
The only payroll taxes they actual pay are social security/medica re taxes which go to the federal government. For 25 YEARS.
 
 
+10 # Anarchist 23 2014-07-23 20:45
What is so beneficial about cheap jobs and reduced schooling for the majority for the sake of enriching the elite? Much the same thing is going on in Philadelphia where they closed 23 public schools (mostly black) and then built a $40 million dollar prison. The ever increasing poverty and squalor of our society trumps the arguments of giving corporations tax breaks because they are job creators. The jobs they create are poorly paid or overseas!
 
 
+14 # Malcolm 2014-07-23 11:35
"While many other Nissan plants have unionized workforces, Nissan has indirectly threatened to close its Mississippi plant for good and move out of state if its workers organize."

NO PROBLEM! Let the fuckers move out. Then foreclose on the bloody factory, and start building "Made in 'Sippi" brand EVs.

I know that most government "agencies" are loathe to "compete with" private industry, but THIS private industry is BEGGING for it!
 
 
+12 # fredboy 2014-07-23 11:42
I didn't know they had schools is Mississippi...
Also makes me want to pass on any future Nissan purchases if they are being built by the workforce there.
 
 
+12 # kalpal 2014-07-23 11:53
Since we allow our legislators to accept bribes of various sort, we'll experience more of this in the future while the corporations are sure to cry that they are being overtaxed as they pocket, more and more rebates and subsidies.
 
 
+11 # tedrey 2014-07-23 11:55
When I was a kid in Ohio in the '50s, the adults used to say that if Mississippi wasn't already a state, we'd be offering it Point 4 programs until it met the standards for statehood. (It still wouldn't have met them yet.)
 
 
+17 # angelfish 2014-07-23 12:01
Total INSANITY! We are ALL being sold down the river by the same S.O.B.'s (or distant relatives, thereof) that sold men, women and children for profit not so long ago in Mississippi! Unable to LEARN anything, they perpetuate the same grief and misery on the ancestors of all those long dead Slaves. Nissan should LEAVE this Country and stick their products where the Sun DON'T shine! They should PAY US for allowing them to build their garbage in this Country! BUY American, People! Get RID of the Cretins who have pandered to foreign interests over their citizens! Put these thieves OUT of business and ELECT people who actually GIVE a Big Rat's Patoot for their constituency!
 
 
+5 # Malcolm 2014-07-23 13:42
Are there any autos actually "made in America" anymore? Which one?
 
 
+5 # reiverpacific 2014-07-23 13:56
Quoting Malcolm:
Are there any autos actually "made in America" anymore? Which one?


I'm no auto expert but as far as I know, most have components made all over the globe (sweat-shops?) and assembled here, no matter what their claims to "Made in America" are.
When I was working in Ecuador I was given what we know here as an Isuzu Trooper for my company vehicle but known there as a "Chevy" Trooper. They were assembled at a Chevy plant in Quito (It broke down on me high in the Andes when my companion and I were on our way to Guayaquil full of Pisco. That was one night to remember -I abandoned it in a small village and we finally got a taxi. It was most likely parted out the next morning).
I remember when Toyota came to Georgetown, Kentucky; same back-door, lobbyist-fueled deals, tax incentives and cheap labor in the name of "creating" jobs.
 
 
+3 # Malcolm 2014-07-23 14:04
Haha, watch out for Pisco Sours! They'll make your car break down when you get HIGH in the Andes!
 
 
+2 # reiverpacific 2014-07-23 14:58
Quoting Malcolm:
Haha, watch out for Pisco Sours! They'll make your car break down when you get HIGH in the Andes!

Heh-heh; we were singin' "Gloom despair and agony on me, deep depression, excessive misereeee. If I didn' have bad luck -wouldn't have no luck at all etc----" @ 11,000 feet to the complete mystification of the villagers, a few of whom were pretty well-oiled on the local aguardiente themselves, especially when I tried to translate it!
That Pisco at least kept us happy -and warm!
 
 
0 # Malcolm 2014-07-24 22:10
Hardehar! I didn't know they had aguardiente in Peru. I've only drunk it in Guate. At the "sacred" location of Mashimon, por ejemplo.

Some of the Indios' aguardiente is very fine stuff!
 
 
+4 # Malcolm 2014-07-23 14:09
And as to "components made all over the globe (sweat-shops?) and assembled here", I don't doubt the cars arrive at the US factories in a large box, with-written on the box-
"Some assembly required"
and "tools needed:
1) Car Jack.
2) Lug wrench"

Made USA
 
 
-7 # HenryS1 2014-07-23 14:41
Texas Aggie, why do you assume the employees don't live there and use community assets already?

It's also sounds pretty foolish to me to assume that the state loses money collecting payroll taxes on the temps. Are you serious?

I actually suspect that this deal may be flawed or over-generous, I am just encouraging people to analyze it. Your reply is a step in that direction, but I suppose I should do some real digging myself. I just miss good journalism, and am weary of inflammatory infotainment from either side.
 
 
+9 # humanmancalvin 2014-07-23 15:14
"As of 2003, the most recent National Assessment of Adult Literacy, at least 15 percent of adults in Mississippi were found to be illiterate, with rates soaring as high as 30 percent in some of the most impoverished and rural counties."
This absurd raping of the school budget should increase these already shameful & dismal numbers. While the fat cats get fatter, the least of the educated voting public will be there to feed them.
 
 
+11 # brux 2014-07-23 16:28
This is what the class warfare battlefield looks like.
It's pretty quiet since the people never seem to fight back.
 
 
+3 # LandLady 2014-07-24 08:05
Like so many issues, this goes back to the land. 50 years ago, almost all school budgets came from local property taxes, and they funded them fine. But with the rise of income tax withholding, big property owners (the 1%) started the propaganda that property taxes are regressive and it's the states that are responsible for education. But state revenues come largely from sales and payroll taxes that fall on the poor and working class. So this myth, which continues today,is a boon to large landowners and a curse on the poor. In addition to restoring prop.tax, we should shift it more to land values and less on buildings, which in itself would create jobs, by reducing the price of land that companies need to build on or expand. Where are they to build - up in the sky? We don't need these ridiculous and corrupt give-away subsidies! Read Henry George!!
 
 
+3 # socrates2 2014-07-24 15:55
Mississippi elites are legendary for this classist (not to mention racist) behavior. Who wants to live (or work) there?
I currently own a Nissan. It'll be the last one I'll ever buy from those slave-drivers.
Be well.
 
 
-1 # Jingze 2014-07-25 10:42
Mississippi doesn't qualify for statehood.
 
 
0 # dilbertgeg 2014-07-26 10:28
I know EXTREMELY progressive left wing economists who favor eliminating ALL (federal) corporate taxes PER SE. PER SE is important. The understanding is to tax "parasitic" and "rent-seeker" corporate & private incomes, where the source of income is "favors" or "rules" of some type, or "property rights" and "licenses" for anti-competitiv e bsns.

The original arg was from Henry George, focused on Land Value speculation and inflation, wealth w/o work or even any kind of *productive* capital investment. This idea has expanded to include resources, roads, airwaves, patent-heavy businesses like pharma, and so on, which receives much in direct and indirect ENTITLEMENTS ... they vehemently argue they ARE ENTITLED by status and wealth to these handouts from Govt and/or directly from consumers and from passive stakeholders -- from the community-at-large.

Corporate taxes hits GENUINE good businesses, while trans-nationals and the Finance Sector has innumerable ways of avoiding and evading taxes.

Instead of obsessing about taxing the rich, it would be better to PREVENT that kind of parasitic income in the first place. We have had LAWS to do that, and we could have more, smarter laws.

In the meantime,
Taxes for (federal) Revenue are Obsolete!
NY Fed Chairman Beardsly Ruml, January 1946
http://huff.to/dn5bpV

Taxes & spending must serve public POLICY and economic goals, not "funding" US govt, which is a fallacy. Govt net spending is the SOURCE of Dollars to pay taxes.
 

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