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What The Hell Is Jay Barth Talking About?

Updated: Apr 14


The Arkansas Times’ Gerard Matthews has a well-reported piece on the Arkansas lottery and some of the challenges that the latest big scam promising new venture will face in its initial start-up.

An Arkansas Project reader also read the piece and notes this quote from Hendrix College political scientist professor Jay Barth, who’s also a Democratic candidate for state Senate:

He says the ability to implement public policy directed toward altering education in Arkansas says a lot about how the culture is changing. “The overwhelming majority by which it was passed does say something about the state’s relatively new commitment to education,” Barth says. “The populace is committed in a real way to educational change and I think that’s part of the lasting legacy of the Clinton era. [Bill] Clinton’s governorship really took a step toward saying education is key to changing this state and I think this is a continuation of that trend.”

Hm. That sounds pretty noble, but I would suggest that the overwhelming vote in favor of the lottery had less to do with Arkansans being “committed in a real way to educational change” and more to do with Arkansans who were “committed to the hope that they’ll score a shit ton of free money by winning the lottery.” It’s a subtle difference.

That quibble aside, read the whole thing.

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