The Securities and Exchange Commission has sued the city of
Harrisburg for fraud, alleging that officials in the Pennsylvania
capital misled the public about the city’s financial condition.
The SEC says the misleading statements came in the city’s 2009
budget report, its annual and mid-year financial statements and a
“State of the City” address. The case marks the first time the SEC
has charged a municipality with misleading investors in statements
made outside of securities documents.
The Southern Company (NYSE: SO) Chairman, President and CEO Thomas Fanning got a 62 percent jump to $9.75 million last year, according to an SEC filing. He got $6.02 million in 2010.
Fanning, who has led the Atlanta-based energy company since December 2010, received a base annual salary of $1.06 million, shares worth $2.25 million, stock options worth $1.50 million, $2.46 million in non-equity incentive and $2.42 million representing a change in pension value and nonqualified deferred compensation.
There are historical reasons for why we lock up so many people,
some going back a century or more, and some starting in 1980 and 2001.
Knowing what they are (and what they are not)
lets us see what we can do to end the epidemic of
incarceration that is damaging education and agriculture in Georgia.
Over all, there are now more people under
“correctional supervision” in America—more than
were in the Gulag Archipelago under Stalin at its height. That city of
the confined and the controlled, Lockuptown, is now the second largest
in the United States.
The accelerating rate of incarceration over the past few decades is just
as startling as the number of people jailed: in 1980, there were about
two hundred and twenty people incarcerated for every hundred thousand
Americans; by 2010, the number had more than tripled, to seven hundred
and thirty-one. No other country even approaches that. In the past two
decades, the money that states spend on prisons has risen at six times
the rate of spending on higher education.
And we can’t afford that, especially not when we’re cutting school budgets.
That graph of education vs. incarceration spending is for California.
Somebody should do a similar graph for Georgia.
It had everything to do with the king of yellow journalism newspapers
not wanting competition for his yellow paper and the king of the new
plastics not wanting competition with them: competition from hemp.
As the methods for processing hemp into paper and plastics were becoming
more readily available and affordable, business leaders including William
Randolph Hearst and DuPont stood to lose fortunes. They did everything in
their power to have it outlawed. Luckily for Hearst, he was the owner
of a chain of newspapers. DuPont’s chief financial backer Andrew
Mellon (also the Secretary of the Treasury during President Hoover)
was responsible for appointing Harry J. Anslinger, in 1931 as the head
of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs.
Anslinger and Hearst made up whatever propaganda they thought might
scare the public into supporting prohibiting hemp:
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We may face community opposition to facility location, which may adversely
affect our ability to obtain new contracts. Our success in obtaining new
awards and contracts sometimes depends, in part, upon our ability to
locate land that can be leased or acquired, on economically favorable
terms, by us or other entities working with us in conjunction with our
proposal to construct and/or manage a facility. Some locations may be
in or near populous areas and, therefore, may generate legal action or
other forms of opposition from residents in areas surrounding a proposed
site. When we select the intended project site, we attempt to conduct
business in communities where local leaders and residents generally
support the establishment of a privatized correctional or detention
facility. Future efforts to find suitable host communities may not be
successful. We may incur substantial costs in evaluating the feasibility
of the development of a correctional or detention facility. As a result,
we may report significant charges if we decide to abandon efforts to
develop a correctional or detention facility on a particular site. In
many cases, the site selection is made by the contracting governmental
entity. In such cases, site selection may be made for reasons related
to political and/or economic development interests and may lead to the
selection of sites that have less favorable environments.
CCA doesn’t like community opposition, because it reduces CCA’s
ability to site prisons, which adversely affects their bottom line.
Funny how that happens because a private prison company’s main goal
is profit, not rehabilitation, public safety, or justice.
We don’t have to accept a private prison in Lowndes County, Georgia.
If we tell the Industrial Authority and CCA no, CCA will probably
And the more communities that tell CCA no, the less profitable they
CCA’s 2010 annual report states categorically that, “The demand for our
facilities and services could be adversely affected by the relaxation
of enforcement efforts, leniency in conviction or parole standards
and sentencing practices or through the decriminalization of certain
activities that are currently proscribed by our criminal laws — for
instance, any changes with respect to drugs and controlled substances
or illegal immigration could affect the number of persons arrested,
convicted, and sentenced, thereby potentially reducing demand for
correctional facilities to house them.”
CCA continues, “Legislation has been proposed in numerous jurisdictions
that could lower minimum sentences for some non-violent crimes and
make more inmates eligible for early release based on good behaviour,
(while) sentencing alternatives under consideration could put some
offenders on probation who would otherwise be incarcerated. Similarly,
reductions in crime rates or resources dedicated to prevent and enforce
crime could lead to reductions in arrests, convictions and sentences
requiring incarceration at correctional facilities.”