Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

The only thing that sucks harder than Alabama’s economy, is Governor Bentley.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, October 25, 2012

Let’s be absolutely certain about a few things.

Number One: Alabama Governor Robert Bentley is – as a politician – a liar, thief and utter incompetent who is shitting on the people of Alabama and wiping his dirty ass with the United States Constitution.

Number Two: Alabama Governor Robert Bentley is – as a politician – a racist.

Number Three: The majority of the state’s Republican leaders are also incompetent boobs, liars and racists.

Number Four: I have utterly NO respect for the man Robert Bentley. Not as a politician, not as a human being. NONE whatsoever.

I predict Alabama will only be better off only AFTER he leaves… the dirty rotten scumbag.

Alabama has the worst economy in the Southeast. Wonder why? (Joey Kennedy)

Published: Thursday, October 25, 2012, 11:30 AM     Updated: Thursday, October 25, 2012, 12:17 PM

By Joey Kennedy | jkennedy@al.com

AL HB56 racists

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley-R, with HB 56 sponsors Sen. Scott Beason-R, left, and Rep. Micky Hammon-R, right, still defends the state’s terrible immigration law, despite the clear damage it has caused to Alabama’s economy. (AP)

Remember when the Legislature was steamrolling through that overreaching, harsh, toughest-in-the-nation immigration law in 2011? The sponsors said not only would be be mean enough to make individuals and families so miserable they’d self-deport, but also would boost Alabama’s economy and put good ol’ red-blooded, U.S. citizen Alabamians back to work.

Odd report this week, then, from the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, which said Alabama has the worst economy in the Southeast. Worse than Louisiana. Worse than South Carolina. Heck, worse than, my goodness, ThankGodforMississippi

Makes us proud, doesn’t it?

There is a saving grace. While Alabama’s economy sucks more than any other in the Southeast, it’s only the fourth worst economy in the United States. Yea us! We’re No. 47!

The outlook for Alabama isn’t that sunny, either, the report says. Unemployment is down to about 8.3 percent, from last October’s 8.8 percent, but economists attribute that to jobs that have simply disappeared, not to jobs having been created.

That, too, can be traced to the immigration law, which left farmers, construction companies, restaurants and other labor-intensive industries looking for workers, then settling for fewer of them when Alabamians failed to fill the jobs.

A University of Alabama economist was ridiculed by state officials and others when he said the immigration law would hurt Alabama’s economy, not help it. The University of Alabama Center for Business and Economic Research said early on the law would cost the state billions in lost production and tens of millions in lost state sales and income taxes.

Jose Antonio Vargas to be in Bham

Pulitzer Prize winner Jose Antonio Vargas will speak in Birmingham, Alabama on the topic of immigration.

I suppose HB 56-supporters are still laughing at him, because our state leaders are nothing if not in profound denial. There is no telling how many business opportunities we’ve missed because companies took Alabama off their lists of possibilities after our hateful law was passed and our national reputation as an open and accepting state was destroyed.

We have confirmed that horrible stereotype that has haunted us for decades.

Immigrants are important not only to Alabama’s economy, but to the nation’s economy. The sooner we understand that and appreciate it — the sooner we accept it — the better the policies and laws we’ll be able to develop.

There must be a more reasonable federal immigration policy, one that acknowledges the realities, not one that ignores the facts.

Alabama’s suffering economy is sure to come up in Tuesday’s Immigration Town Hall at UAB.

The town hall features undocumented journalist Jose Antonio Vargas and goes from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Hill Center’s Alumni Auditorium. Email events@al.com for more information and to RSVP. Or call 934-8225.

Alabama has self-inflicted this economic wound, just so a group of self-serving politicians could score political points at election time by pandering to our worst natures. They accomplished their goal. Meanwhile, Alabama’s weak economy continues to suffer, unable to reach even the most modest of its goals.

Those are the facts. What do you think?

Joey Kennedy, a Pulitzer Prize-winner, is a community engagement specialist for al.com and The Birmingham News. Reach him at jkennedy@al.com.


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