Thursday, October 20, 2011
Haley Barbour said there’s no better government job than governor.
“And this is likely my last government job,” he said.
Barbour’s two-term stint as governor of Mississippi is winding down. A new governor, either Johnny Dupree or Phil Bryant, will be sworn into office in January.
Close to Nowhere
Boy or girl turtle?
Thanks to Wikipedia, I may have an explanation as to why youngest granddaughter Remy is finding (and bringing home) lots of box turtles.
And I quote: “Prior to hibernation, box turtles tend to move further into the woods, where they dig a chamber for overwintering.”
Since we live in the woods and Remy rambles all over those same woods, she’s finding the poor turtles that are just trying to find a bed before the coming cold.
Glorious October weather in Mississippi
Ah, glorious October in Mississippi. Is there any finer weather in the world?
April and October are simply spectacular in Mississippi. I’d be hard pressed to tell you which one I enjoy more. And now Daylight Saving Time lasts all the way to November!
Letters To The Editor
Yes on Initiative 31
On November 8, the voters of Mississippi will have the opportunity to amend our state constitution to limit the power of government to use eminent domain to acquire property from one private individual and turn it over to another private individual or company for their private use.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2005 that the city of New London, Connecticut, could force an entire subdivision of residents to sell their land to the Pfizer Corporation so Pfizer could build a research facility. The court decided that the increased tax revenue from the research facility would benefit the public and was therefore a “public use.”
This interpretation is now what our founding fathers had in mind when they introduced the concept of eminent domain. The traditional uses for eminent domain have always been schools, roads, bridges, railroads, etc., not tax revenue from economic development.
Since that ruling in 2005, 43 states have enacted laws limiting the powers of eminent domain to protect landowners’ rights. Mississippi has not done so to this point. In several recent legislative sessions, eminent domain reform bills have been introduced but died before becoming law.
So the Mississippi Farm Bureau spearheaded an effort to amend the Mississippi Constitution for eminent domain reform – to keep individuals’ property from being taken by the government and turned over to other private parties. More than 120,000 Mississippi voters signed a petition to put the reform measure on the next statewide ballot to let the voters decide whether Mississippi should do what most other states have already done to protect private property.
Opponents of this initiative say that is is a solution without a problem. I say they are very short-sighted. There have been instances all across the country of private property being taken for economic development purposes. Just because it isn’t a problem in this state now doesn’t mean it won’t be in the future. Tough economic times force officials to make difficult decisions. The chance to increase tax revenue at the expense of someone’s private property rights might be too hard to resist.
Other opponents predict an economic disaster if this initiative is passed.
They say that Mississippi won’t be in the running for large economic development projects that bring jobs to our state. The Institute for Justice did a study that examined the economic indicators in states that have already passed eminent domain reform measures and found that, “There appear to be no negative economic consequences from eminent domain reform. State trends in all three key economic indicators were essentially the same after reform as before...even states with the strongest reforms saw no ill economic effect compared to states that failed to enact reform.”
Farm Bureau’s stance has always been that economic development situations are best handled with a willing buyer and a willing seller. Economic development can and does occur without the use of eminent domain.
We need to do everything we can to inhibit government from using eminent domain for private economic development.
Vote Yes on Initiative 31!
Immanuel Betts, Marines, 2nd tour, Afghanistan
Chad Bowman, Afghanistan
Houston Brimmage, National Guard, Iraq
Frederick D. Brown, Army, Afghanistan
Shanika Buffington, National Guard, Iraq
B.J. Butler, Army
Wesley Crutcher II, Afghanistan
John Davis, Army, Iraq
John Westley Day, National Guard, Iraq
Michael Dunworth, Navy, Iraq
LaCourtney Ellis, Army, Afghanistan
Tiffany Erwin, Army, Afghanistan, now in Iraq
Charles Fairbairn, Army, Iraq; now in Afghanistan
Wayne Gowland, Army, Iraq
Jarod Grimes, Army, Iraq
Jorty “Bubba” Holmes, Army, Iraq
Lee (Brandon) Hutchens, Marines, Iraq
Sammie Ivy, National Guard, Iraq
Jason Janicki, Army, Iraq
Robert Jordan Jr., Army, Iraq
Scott King, Navy, Afghanistan
LaVandes Lester, Marines, Iraq
James Light, Army, Afghanistan
Sale T. Lilly IV, Navy, Afghanistan
Antione McNeil, Army, Iraq
Victor Miller, Army, Iraq
Chad Minor, Air Force
Will Olita, Navy, Arabian Sea (Afghanistan)
Chadwick (Chad) Phillips, Army, 2nd tour, Iraq
Scott Poff, National Guard, 2nd tour, Iraq
Deron Randolph, Marines, Iraq
Darryl Wayne Ricks, National Guard, Iraq
Candace L. White, Army, Afghanistan
Justin Sanders, Army, Iraq
Cody Sanderson, Air Force, Iraq
Mitch Swann, Army, Iraq
Landon Tucker, National Guard, 2nd tour, Iraq
Chauncy Turnage, Army, 2nd tour, Iraq
Supporting Our Troops
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