Friday, January 30, 2009

Hudson and Humphreys: What a Team!

Local officials are working toward a Feb. 19 deadline to prepare plans and bids ready submission to the federal government for a portion of the $825 billion economic recovery stimulus package proposed by President Barack Obama.

Ray Humphreys, CEO of Delta Regional Medical Center, said the hospital has a master plan for land purchased several years ago. The property is on Colorado Street south of Lowe's, which is on Mississippi 1. “The primary purpose of that purchase was to find a location for a new hospital when we have the funds to build that,” Humphreys said. “The 180-acre campus would also have room for and has plans for other facilities to be on that campus.”

Humphreys said the facilities could include doctors' offices, a cancer center and various medical support businesses.“Those businesses like to locate near hospitals. What we want to do is go ahead and do something that will cause that development to start,” said Humphreys. “We can't build a new hospital right now, but let's go ahead and get an entrance road in there with underground utilities in place so that people can go ahead and start developing their facilities on that campus. We want to make it development ready.”

Although DRMC has been involved in a $6 million renovation for the past couple of years, the hospital is 55 years old and does not offer the kind of facilities necessary to attract some doctors practicing in specialties, he said.“This community needs a modern, new health care center so that we can address the needs in this area more adequately,” he said, adding that Mississippi leads the nation in incidences of many health problems, such as diabetes and hypertension." We've got to have the facilities from which to operate to attract doctors,” said Humphreys.

Humphreys said DRMC has had talks with University Medical Center and William Carey College about the School of Osteopathic Medicine they are developing to use the hospital as a residency and a training program.“We need to do those kinds of things,” he said. “It's kind of hard to attract medical specialists if you have old, out-of-date facilities. It doesn't give them the ability to practice the kind of medicine that they were trained to do.”

No thanks! said...

My response is more of a question. For all the millions spent on DRMC why is it out of date???? No, I do not want a new hospital on the south end of town....why?? For one, my taxes are stretched to the limit, as it is in this city. The last thing we need are more taxes through the city and county to pay for this new hospital.

Second? Let's see, go to any city, not just Greenville, and where ever that hospital is located you can bet the worst part of town is nearby. Most welfare recipients and all of the low income follow hospitals as to where they want to live because of convenience to get free medical attention when needed. The closer they are the less need of transportation or the cheaper it is for them to get there. I honestly am not trying to be racist, this applies to whites or honest and you will see what I am talking about.

Most hospitals were built years ago, the neighborhoods then were usually upscale and high class. Now those same neighborhoods are run down and the original owners are long gone.

Think of Jackson, the VA Center, Univ. Med Center....all dangerous areas to be visiting loved ones in the hospital.So, please, fix up, update the DRMC and keep the crime rate where it is without it expanding more to the south, thanks but no thanks!

There he goes again! $6 million dollars in renovations; $4 million for an ad campaign and now Ray wants a new hospital! Does this man ever quit?

NICU - Failed; Heart Center - Flop; Burn Center - Gone; KDH... why? When will Ray learn that hospitals are not about shiny new buildings, but about qualified medical staff who are treated fairly and are proud to work at that facility. The way to keep good nurses, physicians and ancillary staff is to create a work environment that is safe, non-threatening and fair to all. That's where DRMC fails.

In terms of having state of the art equipment, DRMC is doing rather well. Sure, everyone would love to have a new medical center, but would it improve health care in the Delta? Would building all new schools improve our educational system? I think not.

So, in the last two years, we have spent $10 million dollars to "build the next great hospital in Mississippi" and now Ray has realized that none of his ideas have worked. So now he is back in his field of dreams asking for money to build an entrance road with underground utilities. Another "road to nowhere" funded by guess who?


Wednesday, January 28, 2009

In Good Hands?

Concerned Citizen writes:

On Dec. 2, I called the Greenville Water Plant to report that raw sewage was backing up into my downstairs bathroom. City workers came by that afternoon and checked the sewer line at the south end of the street, but they did not let me know anything.

A few days later I reported to the water plant again that raw sewage was still coming into my downstairs bathroom. Workers came out again and told me to call a plumber. Plumbers came by, opened the manhole by the street at the end of my driveway, and showed me that the city sewer line is clogged or has collapsed north of my property, causing the raw sewage to overflow and back up into my house.

To make a long story short, city workers have been here; representatives from the Health Department have been here; Brad Jones has been here; plumbers have been here; Lee Owen has tried several times to help - and still nothing has been repaired. The plumbers did dig a trench in my front yard and left my clean-out valve open so that raw sewage will no longer come into my house.

The city workers and Brad Jones all admit that this is a city problem, but they have no idea when the sewer line will be repaired. In the meantime I have paid my plumber $433.35 for digging an unsightly (but necessary) trench in my front yard. The city should reimburse me for this expense since the obstruction is in the city sewer line north of my house, but Brad Jones tells me that the city probably will not reimburse me.

In mid-January I asked Brad again when the repairs will be made to the sewer line on my street. He admitted that he has no idea. He went on to say that there are many jobs on the list before this one.

Something tells me that this job will be like so many other projects in Greenville - the downtown improvements, the Bass renovation, the city street repairs, etc., etc., etc.

Something tells me, you're right! The really sad fact is that while residential streets and sewers are in total disrepair, we can still find money for the downtown "road to nowhere." The residential sections of Washington avenue (from DRMC to Hwy 82) are horrendous. This section is designated as our "historical" district for which tax payers pay dearly and yet the avenue is almost impassable.

Look at Bowman Boulevard. For the total costs of "patching" that street over the past ten years, it should be paved in gold. Instead, it is a roller coaster of bumps and ruts. The city has been working on Main Extended for 3 years and every time they patch a section, water starts oozing from from another and there are still several open "craters" that will jar your teeth.

If the past election has taught us a new buzz-word, it is "transparency". We should demand to know how our road and property taxes are being spent. Go down to City Hall and ask for a copy of a line-item budgetary expenditure report for 2008. Keep track of how many people you have to ask for this report as well as the number of excuses you get of why that information is "not currently available".

Actually, it would be a very good question for the Mayor herself during her weekly open forum visits with the residents. "Transparency" in our city and county governments is not something we will see in our lifetime.


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Over the Line

DRMC employee shares:

It is no wonder there is poor morale at DRMC which affects patient care. The way employees are mistreated and abused by upper management with reckless disregard for the DRMC Code of Conduct, not to mention federal laws, is just a drop in the bucket.

Recent events at "holiday parties" are good examples of upper management's misconduct with no accountability. Employees were attending a departmental Thanksgiving party held at the home of a supervisor. A revenue director became inebriated and in a drunken stupor told a hospital worker she was going to beat her ass and added there were other asses there that she was going to beat.

This is clearly indicative of upper management's Neanderthal mentality, and misconduct regarding rules against threat of violence to employees. If this was not bad enough, at a departmental Christmas party held at the home of the revenue director, the financial administrator became inebriated and in his drunken stupor told a worker and her husband that he needed to go home and take care of "that thing" before she had surgery.

This is clearly indicative of upper management's disdain, and misconduct regarding rules against lewd remarks and sexual harassment.

Sounds like DRMC employees had a bit too much holiday cheer! As for lewd remarks and sexual harassment, you should report this officially to Mr. Alphe Wells, whose job it is to insure that these incidents are investigated completely and appropriate action taken.

Unfortunately, this is just another example of the lack of sophistication and crudeness tolerated in "upper management" positions at DRMC. Humor is one thing, but when does it cross the line? I would suggest that the two examples of behavior above are about ten steps OVER the line.

We should demand more of our community "leaders".


Monday, January 19, 2009

Congratulations President Obama!

It won't be all festivities and celebrations for Mayor Heather McTeer Hudson when she arrives in the nation's capital for the presidential inauguration of Barack Obama.

Sure, there will be inaugural balls and such, but Hudson is also going to work.“We're going to the inauguration on Tuesday and I've got meetings on Wednesday morning.”

Still, the historical significance of the event isn't lost on the mayor.“It's wonderful to be able to celebrate the first African-American president of the United States,” said Hudson. “It's truly momentous.

At the same time,” she added, “it's exciting to celebrate the president who is ready to come to work.”Hudson will continue her efforts to bring funding to Greenville for a variety of projects. The president-elect has pledged funds to help the nation's crumbling infrastructure, something the two-term mayor knows a lot about.Hudson will meet on Capital Hill with other mayors and congressional leaders.

“Specifically for me, it's the Greenville community and other communities around Greenville, making sure that our infrastructure needs are there at the table,” Hudson said. “We're not going seeking theme parks and seeking things that have come under fire by the larger media, that some of the cities are looking for.

“We're going for base infrastructure: streets, sewer, water,” she said. “And we don't want to be left out. We've got to hit the ground running from day one, making sure that our needs are there.

Hudson believes her plan will work.“How better to improve the United States of America, both from an economic standpoint and from a structural standpoint, than to put the money into infrastructure,” said Hudson. “(Obama) is working not only with state governments but also local organizations, mayors, city council members, - organizations that have actual input, have hands-on contact - with how these dollars would be spent in our community.

“He's really getting a good idea of what it's going to take to get the structure of this nation back into play,” Hudson continued. “But also how many jobs is that going to create, what's the amount of money that is going to go into that?”

Hudson said when Obama unveiled his infrastructure stimulus package, he emphasized the need for information for projects that would be ready to start quickly. Going on the belief that “if you don't ask, you won't get it,” or possibly, “dream big,” Hudson has a wish list totaling nearly $338 million.

Hudson recently began a new feature at City Hall, “Open Office with the Mayor.” Citizens are invited to visit with the mayor at to discuss concerns, ideas, or plans they have regarding Greenville. Open Office is designed to give citizens the opportunity to just stop by and chat.

“I want citizens to feel free to stop by and share their ideas, compliments and complaints,” Hudson said. “In a city with over 40,000 residents, it can be difficult at times to get to every single person. This will allow us a day each week dedicated to just hearing from our citizens and improve our overall communications.”

The sessions will be held every Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the mayor's office. No appointments are necessary. Persons will be seen on a first come first serve basis.

By TERRI FERGUSON SMITH, Delta Democrat Times

Tuesday, January 20, 2009, will be a momentous day for this country and the world. A new era will begin ushered in by one of the most challenging economies since the great depression. President Obama will need the support of every American to achieve his goals. It is a time for all of us to put aside our personal views and stand behind the man we have elected as President.

No one man can clean up the mess we have "permitted" in Washington D.C., but I believe that we will see significant steps toward that goal under Obama's leadership. Between the economy and the war, I can not imagine why anyone would want the job of President, but Mr. Obama seems to think he can make a difference and we should all commend his dedication and fortitude.

With a little positive thinking and a great deal of support from all Americans, perhaps President Obama will be the catalyst for change that this country has needed for years. We need a leader to whom we can look to for strength, honesty and support of the freedoms on which America was founded.

I hope you join me in wishing President Barack Obama the best of luck as our 44th President of the United States of America.


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Education is the Key

Anonymous said...

You can't blame the whites for leaving Greenville or the public schools. blame teenage pregnancy, one parent families, crime, gangs, welfare, parents who don't care, etc. i feel safe at ws. i don't feel safe at greenville public schools. Some of the parents are as scary as the students. i know that will be taken as racist, but it's how i feel. i want to go somewhere where i have the same lifestyle and values as the other parents. My family doesn't live off government handouts. I believe in working for what you get. I don't want to be around people who have an "entitlement" mentality.
9:05 AM

Anonymous said...

Private Schools were a blessing to this community. Oh yes a lot of parents cut budgets took a side job and worked extra hours to make sure our children got the best education available to them. My children went to private school and they are now well educated and contributing to their respective communities which by the way does not happen to be Greenville. I graduated from Gville High and got a good education. I was there before metal detectors and guards walking the halls.

I have watched classmates who come back for a reunion and have not been in Gville for 20 yrs or so just cry when they see the city now. In fact there are several upcoming reunions that are thinking about having theirs outside of Greenville because of the present condition of the city. They want to remember Greenville as it was when we had leadership in Greenville.

Whether you are black or white just ride around and look at your city and see if you are satisfied. Tell me your elected officials are making a difference. Ride down some side streets like S. California and tell me you like the way it looks or McCorkle Circle. Try 82 Hwy or Main St.

Just tell me at what point Gville was in this condition under white leadership. It is natural to defend your race but you sure as the devil do not have to vote for them if you want a better Gville for both black and white.
10:24 AM

Quality education is the key to a growing and prosperous economy. If you are lucky enough to receive a good education in the Delta, the first thing you do is "get out" (as the author above noted). Who can blame them? Today's Delta is the heart of poverty, ignorance and apathy. The local government is corrupt and their crimes go unpunished.

Local politicians stand in front of a TV camera and slaughter the English language. Some are barely literate. What message does that send to our children about the value of education? The only thing our "leaders" know how to do well is hold onto their jobs (which goes back to the "silent game").

I once had a black teacher tell me that "whites" could not teach "black" children. When I asked her to clarify, she stated, "Y'all don't know where we been; we have a different culture." Admittedly, this was several years ago, but it brings to light a very good question: If you perceive yourself as "different", then logically you expect different treatment... which is the basis for prejudice. What happened to cultural diversity... or is that a one way street?

It is sad to think that former students would consider moving their class reunion rather than have to face the reality of Greenville. Perhaps memories are the only things Greenville has left to offer.


Saturday, January 10, 2009

The Rise and Fall of Racism

A Black Racist speaks said...

Very good insight from both of you. Now if I may, as a black Deltan who still has hope, I’d like to add my two cents. There seems to be a tradition in the Delta (and the whole country for that matter) where black people, unable to come up with a strong enough argument against a white protagonist, almost out of desperation calls the white person a racist.

This, of course, implies an unwritten assumption that black people are not capable of being racist and that all criticism of black people by white people is based on racism.Well, I think it is time to debunk that myth. Black people can be as racist, or even more racist, than some of the worst white racists.
I sincerely believe that black people use the race card when they are unable to come up with convincing arguments against white people. This is not to say that sometimes the criticism by white people of black people is not based on racism, but this is not always the case.

I believe that, by calling somebody a racist, it probably says more about you than about the other person.In any case, how in heaven’s name are we going to be able to have decent debates here if all white people are going to be scared to criticize black people? No one likes to be called a racist, and it is inevitable in the Delta for whites who criticize blacks to be tarnished with that label.

I try to deal with this issue by confessing that I am a racist. Once I have done this, I believe that it levels the playing ground for us to have a conversation about race and racism. And it is important for us to have this conversation. I believe that in our haste to become a “rainbow nation”, we did not deal with the issues that caused us so much pain in the past, and racism is one of those.

Unless we deal with the issues of race and racism, unless we talk about them, they will always come back to haunt us.

Now let’s say this together: I am a racist. You are a racist. Let’s talk.

And what better time to do it than now, before it gets worse for us here and more of the good ones that could lead in the future leave us.

The author makes a good point. To some degree, we are all racists. "Racism" being defined as a dislike of a group or groups of people based solely on their ethnicity. Here in the Delta, we generally label racism as black vs. white. In the mid-west, both blacks and whites are accused of racism toward Hispanic people.

Racism is simply another word for hatred and it only displays one's ignorance. It is easy to blame all of Greenville's woes on one race or the other; however, the real battle is not black vs. white, but educated vs. ignorant. The educated of both races are fleeing Greenville, leaving us with only those of an "entitlement" mentality.

The best thing that Mayor Hudson has done for Greenville is prove that neither the sex nor the race of a mayor matters at the end of the day. Greenville's decline started decades ago under mostly white leadership and has steadily progressed.

Perhaps now that both races have failed to produce the "magic strategy" to save Greenville; it might be a good time to join hands and work together.


Friday, January 09, 2009

Welfare: The Other Bridge to Nowhere

Local Reflector said...

I'll always pull for the Delta to succeed but I left there a few years ago as well. While there, the only way I really felt I could stir emotion and fight apathy was through Delta Scoop, so I launched it for $17 to buy an easy website that's now expired. I tried to physically help in the community. My participation wasn't welcome among the local civic leaders so, BOOM, the Local Reflector was born.

One can accuse many blog participants and commentators of doing nothing but talking negatively. From my perspective a few years ago, just offering an outlet was better than keeping quiet, being censored and saying nothing at all, thus guaranteeing no debate.

I'll challenge those who call existing residents "nay-sayers" to speak to the aspects in terms of civic, economic and educational policy matters. Real policy and real leadership - don't fall back on comments like Greenville has a great steak house,had local writers, a rich blues heritage and other philosophical anesthetics that prevent true issues discussions. The truth is that without discussing cultural offerings that really don't advance the economy or truly increase the overall quality of life (but would hurt it if they vanished), the issues are tough for Washington County.

REAL "meat n' potatoes" policy discussions cause pain right now. They did for my entire life in the Delta. I'll admit.....I wouldn't know what to do either.

The truth is that there is really not a lot any of us can do about the economy of Greenville. The welfare population is growing at three times the national average. Children are having children. Educated students (black and white) flee Greenville as soon as they are handed a diploma... vowing never to return. Tax payers are fleeing Greenville to secure what little savings and equity they have left in real estate.

So, who is left in Greenville? Primarily a group of uneducated, unmotivated, welfare "savvy" residents who ride free on the taxpayers' dollars. Many, not all, are quite comfortable with this system as it is all they have known for generations. Welfare was developed to be a "temporary bridge" between jobs. It has evolved into a way of life for many.

Under our current Welfare system, people are penalized for going to work. If you are unemployed, you get free health care for yourself and your children through Medicaid. You get food stamps and qualify for Section 8 housing in which the government pays all or part of your rent. If you have worked at all within the last 12 months, you can also draw unemployment up to $230 a week.

If your 15 year old daughter comes home pregnant, is that good news or bad? Economically, it is probably good news in that the unborn child will soon be converted to another "check" drawn from the "cash cow" we call welfare!

So, where is the incentive to go out and get a job? If you had free health care, free food, little or no housing costs and up to $230 per week for anything else you wanted... would YOU be pounding the pavement looking for a job?

The system is being abused and WE are permitting it. When was the last time you saw a starving child in the Delta? Most are obese because of their lifestyles and diets. Illegitimate children have become monetary rewards under our system that sets no boundaries to this economic "dole".

To flee Greenville is not to fix Greenville... as LR has noted; however, for many, it is probably the first step toward a brighter future. To those who complain that the "Scoop" is too negative, I refer you to LR's initial motive for founding the Delta Scoop, which was to provide an outlet and forum for debate. I have tried to maintain that tradition which seems to have been moderately successful.

I doubt that there are any simple answers in the debate over of how to "fix" Greenville... but when we stop asking questions, we are sunk!


Sunday, January 04, 2009

The "Mind Game"

Local Reflector said...

Please, if you can, support the Delta Democrat Times and give new leadership a chance to prove itself. Granted, the early part of this decade saw the previous managers play deference to local politicians who don't want the public to get in tune with what's happening under their leadership. The perception was a reality, then, and may've contributed to philosophical disagreements between some subscribers and the publisher. It's one thing to cheer lead for a region, it's another to insist that the general public turn its head or be labeled as a malcontent.

Granted, there's a difference between attacking the newspaper emotionally and noting the growing number of wire stories being published daily. Remember, that media outlets are 100% dependent on local merchants to advertise with some national advertising purchases. As car lots find sales plummeting and other industries survive the recession, becoming monopolies with no pressure to market to a captive audience, you'll see media financial struggles. The result is fewer reporters with the same or growing demands of the readership.

TV news does make the spot news coverage dated in the newspaper but young television reporters may not have the time to dig deeper or sufficient training (at this stage of their career) to follow complex issues. Their audiences won't allow a slower news pace so it's "run and gun." However, advertising solely funds TV newsrooms to broadcast to larger audiences but there's no "pay per view" aspect to subscribing to watch local news whereas a daily paper subscription IS pay to view. There is a niche on which to capitalize. Is there enough of a paying audience and reading audience to justify advertising in local media and thus helping reporters earn a small living in Greenville? It's a dilemma facing newspapers and local broadcasters across this country as people forgo the knowledge of what's happening on their street in favor of nightly cable "political entertainment" shows many assume to be journalistic programs over editorial platforms on strictly national issues.

The DDT could learn much from the success of the "Delta Scoop" by and large. There's a lot of whining on here but there are always stubbles among the hay. News die-hards seek engagement when discussing the issues. They are few but they are empowering to reporters, each other and to those who are seeking better understanding and involvement.However, an independent media must be cultivated. It's not enough to silence "everyman critics and it's NO public service to for there to be no journalist watchdogs on city hall or the county courthouse. A hybrid relationship serves the same purpose for readers as having no newspaper or local news broadcast. One media outlet may disappear but if the existing news outlets don't tell it "straight," what's the difference?

Anonymous said...

Welcome back, LR. You've been missed.

Anonymous said...

Local Reflector I agree with all you have said and i have enjoyed our local paper for over 50 yrs.

Now let me state how hard it is to support our local businesses under the present leadership. Yes it is very hard! Mayor Hudson has created the worst disaster in Greenville since the 1927 flood. Yes Greenville survived the flood and flourished but under our present leadership we are on a path that will end in failure if the leadership does not change. Even if she resigns we will be no better off with Gines so we are literally in a no win situation.

Mr Jefcoat had us in descent shape and after he left it was all downhill. Mayor Hudson wants this city black and wants to do it with grant money and government assistance 100%. Well mayor Greenville was not built that way. Greenville was built by business leaders who loved greenville and wanted to make a difference instead of just getting elected for a pay check. There is not 1 successful business leader on council.

Sure there are some good people on council and some really want to make a difference but it has not happened under Hudson. The Morale in Greenville is terrible. It is no longer a place to come shop. The crime is terrible. The streets are terrible. No business wants to come here. The people who spend money do it outside of Greenville.Wake up Mayor!

The fact is 35 per cent of the Greenville population is paying 100 per cent of the taxes and the rest are unemployed and getting government assistance with no ambition to do better.The city is crumbling around us and regardless of economy and excuses the present leadership is responsible.

There is not a industry or business that could make a difference by locating in Greenville coming here until we clean Greenville up and have a major change at city hall. Bottom Line.

Local Reflector responds:

Greenville needs more of the entrepreneurial spirit, there's no question but that's a spirit that is cultivated or inspired as people believe in their abilities. Many times, grant monies short circuit the process by funding ideas or proposed ideas without a diligent audit of the grant recipients' ability or motivation to actually act on the proposal not to mention short-circuiting the natural forces that dictate whether a proposed program or project is an effective or "good" idea or whether it needs to be replaced with the next experiment.

Once grant recipients get acclimated to a steady paycheck via grant money, it KILLS the process entirely.Why would a non-profit agency or citizen "activist" want to solve community challenges if the existence of the challenge (and its worsening) means more money, more pay and more political clout for the supposed expert? Grants can do great things for cash-strapped communities....paving roads (but in a timely manner) is one such benefit.
But it depends on leaders at the local level actively working and not holding meetings, issuing soundbites and insisting that the public hear they're working hard yet are helpless in facing the situation at hand. These economic development meetings are basically the same meeting being held over and over and over. I believe a severely apathetic general public allows this to occur. Apathy allows the incompetent to reign without worry while cheating the community of brain power and intellect (as people choose NOT to offer possibly constructive ideas or honest "medicine").

If 35% of the people are paying 100% of the taxes, I don't think that fact is lost on Greenville leaders. I certainly do not believe they would purposely punish taxpayers though you taxpayers may feel punished. If they keep raising taxes, they risk greater outward migration of citizens with the financial means to move away from the fiscal policy. If they start cutting services, they'll alienate tax payers who believe they are getting NOTHING for their tax payments instead of the current disappointment.

In summary, your legacy families will stay and go down with the proverbial ship and don't have the answers - they ruled the area well before a second-term mayor. A new influx of new citizens, while openly supported, probably isn't so popular behind closed doors and at a personal level (where new residents would feel their sense of "home" when arriving).

So, how do you inspire a generation of people while instilling a work ethic and removing excuse? Civic leaders are talking a talk but the "walking" must be done by the displaced workers who'll earn a paycheck and then stimulate the local economy. Think Textron. Employees who said they needed work effectively ruined it making the Greenville plant not worth the company's efforts in spite of heavy economic development subsidies.

Local leaders really are helpless except to adjust or maintain tax rates and public expenditures to keep current taxpayers somewhat stable and attempt to hold population levels. I don't envy the job. I've never bought into the power of positive thinking without an effort to create a business-friendly environment (public school quality, acceptable crime levels, quality water & sewer and decent property tax rates to encourage relocation and home purchases).

Remember, if most of the people are on gov't. assistance....and most of the political and civic leaders benefit from the transfer of gov't. payment monies into their businesses (rents, gambling, etc), then it's an uphill climb to get potential workers to earn their way off the dole, cutting off guaranteed subsidies AND the guaranteed cash flow of local business and political interests who thrive of the steady cash transfer on a monthly basis.

I'm afraid your economy is based on low and no-income citizens transferring its finances (in tiny pieces) to smaller class of leaders who benefit financially and offering its subsequent apathy to current incumbents. It's a mind game, really.

Good to hear from our old friend "Local Reflector". As always, he has a firm grip on the current maladies that plague our community.

The prevailing mentality of our local government is "what's in it for me?" When fiscal misbehavior is permitted, it is in essence "promoted" and it quickly spreads throughout all aspects of local government. Soon, even an "honest" official realizes he has but two options: get on the take, or get out.

I agree with LR that we are caught up in a mind game... or as I would more aptly call it, "The Quiet Game." I keep quiet about what you do and you keep quiet about what I do... a "don't ask, don't tell" philosophy that has served its players well under Mayor Hudson's reign.

Is there hope for Greenville? Yes, there is always hope, but not without action from the few remaining taxpayers. Until we demand better, we should not expect it.


Friday, January 02, 2009

A Changing Era

Anonymous said...

Different subject, but has anybody seen a worse paper than the DDT. Everything is straight off the associated press, or editorials and articles from McComb, Greenwood, or Vicksburg. How about some human interest stories. Maybe we should just have a Wednesday and Sunday DDT..Things to ponder...

Anonymous said...

Give the new editor a chance. He's already made some noticeable improvements. And his editorials have been EXCELLENT. Eleanor Barkhorn and Laura Smith have been recent additions that have performed well, also. Laura seems to be making an effort to work with schools and community organizations to get their news in. Be patient.
Pick up the phone or send an email to the DDT. Give them your kind and considered suggestions. Ask appropriate and reasonable questions, and you might find that they are very responsive when they are not being unfairly (and anonymously) criticized.

No, I don't work for the DDT and never have, but I do recognize the need for a community-based newspaper that represents our interests while giving us access to news from the rest of the planet. I've learned that making an enemy of the editorial staff never helps. Play nice.

Much has changed in Greenville since the days of Hodding Carter. In the early 1950's, there was a sense of pride about living in Greenville. It was noted for outstanding literary figures, artists and its excellent local newspaper, the Delta Democrat Times.

Believe it or not, Greenville Public Schools was rated 12th in the nation for "best quality in public education." It was a simpler time, but there were many good things about Greenville. The DDT brought us much notoriety as a leader in innovative journalism and exemplary writing. Teachers actually used the DDT as a teaching tool as to the correct use of grammar and literary style (and they didn't have "spell check").

Greenville was a growing community and there was much to report in terms of the arts, culture and social change. The DDT was the primary source of news in the Delta and the quality and accuracy of its articles were well respected.

Today, Greenville has changed and so has the DDT. The Carters saw the end of an era coming and sold the newspaper to a syndicated conglomerate. Since then, the newspaper has changed hands several times and is no longer regarded as a source of journalist excellence. The DDT now competes with local television media that broadcasts four to five times a day. Most of what can be considered "news" is old news by the time we read it in the DDT.

However, as the above contributor noted, there have been some noted improvements in the quality of editorials and commentaries presented in the DDT, to which credit must be given. Personally, I would hate to see the DDT fail or be reduced to a biweekly publication. A newspaper can be more than simply "news", but it must stay in tune with its readership.