PERRY – Barbour’s business roundtable

Gov. Haley R. Barbour met with a few dozen of Mississippi’s business and business association leaders in his Capitol Office on Jan. 7, shortly after the Legislature adjourned in anticipation of approaching cold weather and frozen roads.

The business roundtable actually featured a “round table” near the back of the room between the participants and the media, but Barbour addressed the crowd from in front of his desk. Just to the side of his desk stands a Ten Commandments monument. When the Alabama Supreme Court booted a Ten Commandments monument from the Alabama Judicial Building rotunda during the 2003 gubernatorial campaign, both Barbour and his predecessor Ronnie Musgrove pledged to accept it if given the opportunity. I don’t think it was the same monument, but I know it has some good advice for budget writers: Thou shalt not covet.

To covet is to desire inordinately that which belongs to another. And that instruction is good for those who seek tax increases, because government can produce no revenue it does not take away from someone else. Of course, the faithful believe everything they have belongs not to them but to God. That doesn’t help those who crave taxes, as I don’t expect it is any better to covet instead God’s possessions he has entrusted to someone else. But I digress, Barbour did not get a sermon.

Madison County Journal
1/15/10