A northern Alabama sheriff was in federal custody Thursday after a judge ruled he purposely fed inmates skimpy meals so he could make money from an unusual system that lets sheriffs turn a profit on their jail kitchens.
Morgan County Sheriff Greg Bartlett testified at a Wednesday court hearing that he made $212,000 over three years by cheaply feeding prisoners — every cent of it legal under a Depression-era state law and reported on his tax forms as income.
But U.S. District Judge U.W. Clemon ordered federal marshals to arrest Bartlett after hearing a string of skinny prisoners testify they were served paper-thin bologna, bloody chicken and cold grits in the north Alabama county's jail.
More Americans need to understand that this is an illustration of the Modern Republican dream. They want everything - Social Security, the military, prisons, schools, they'll even go after the Post Office - privatized, because they can cheat the system like this sheriff does - legally - and make a ton of money. This is all they mean by "small government." It's the entire story. They are all Boss Hogg wannabes.