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Magnolia Mornings: May 7, 2024

Magnolia Mornings: May 7, 2024

By: Magnolia Tribune - May 7, 2024

Magnolia morning
  • Important state and national stories, market and business news, sports and entertainment, delivered in quick-hit fashion to start your day informed.

In Mississippi

1. 21 Picayune High School students arrested

WLOX is reporting that 21 Picayune High School students were arrested on campus Thursday night, per Pearl River County Sheriff David Allison.

“The 21 students arrested were all at least 18 and charged as adults with malicious mischief after what Sheriff Allison describes as a ‘prank at the school that escalated.’ The teens were taken and booked at the jail, where they waited until parents came to post bond,” WLOX reported.

No other details are known as of now.

2. Levi’s plant in Gluckstadt winding down operations

According to WLBT, Levi Strauss & Co. announced last week that it was planning to “wind down operations” at the Gluckstadt facility, citing “accelerating operational costs and infrastructure needs.”

The plant has been in operation since 1981 and employs about 480 people.

As WLBT notes, “Madison County leaders say plans are already in the works to help employees at the Levi’s Distribution Center find new jobs once the plant there closes.”

National News & Foreign Policy

1. Poll shows inflation top issue with young voters

President Joe Biden speaks in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Sunday, Oct. 1, 2023, in Washington. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

The New York Times is reporting that “while young voters are cooler to Mr. Biden than they were at the same point in 2020, there is little evidence that American support for the Israeli invasion of Gaza is a critical factor in their relative discontent.”

“The latest polling from the Pew Research Center finds 18-to-29-year olds three times more likely to sympathize with Palestinians in the conflict than those over 65, and twice as likely as adults as a whole,” NYT reports, adding, “Recent polls suggest these sympathies have yet to translate into prioritizing the war as a voting issue in 2024.”

NYT goes on to report that in an Economist/YouGov poll taken more recently, in late April, “22 percent of voters aged 18 to 29 listed inflation as their most important issue. Two percent named foreign policy as their top concern.”

2. Social Security concerns in focus

The Wall Street Journal notes that Social Security’s finances are in dire straits. 

“An aging population is pushing up the cost of the program as a smaller share of Americans directly pay into it. That imbalance means that Social Security could become unable to provide full retirement and disability benefits to Americans in 2035, the program’s trustees warned on Monday,” the WSJ reported.

As WSJ reports, when that time comes, “without congressional action, elderly and disabled Americans who rely on Social Security could see their payments cut by 17%. Congress could avoid the crisis by raising payroll taxes, trimming benefits or some combination of the two. Those options carry extreme political risks, though, and policymakers have put off embracing an overhaul of the program.”

Sports & Entertainment

1. Shuckers’ Rodriguez named Player of the Week

(Photo from MiLB Shuckers)

Minor League Baseball announced Monday that Biloxi Shuckers outfielder Carlos Rodriguez was named the Southern League Player of the Week for April 29 to May 5, 2024.

The weekly award is Rodriguez’s first since he was named the Midwest League Player of the Week on May 29, 2022.

Rodriguez is the second Shuckers player and first position player to win a weekly award in 2024

2. Porter breaks single-season HR record at Pearl River

(Photo from PRCC Athletics)

The No. 2 Pearl River baseball team made its final tune-up game before the Region 23 Tournament memorable Monday afternoon, per the team.

Not only did the Wildcats take down North Arkansas 11-4 to set a new program record for wins in a season with 47, but first baseman Hollis Porter (Hurley; East Central) broke the single-season home run record with his 20th blast of the year.

Markets & Business

1. Stock futures even as investors appear bullish

U.S. stock futures flickered near the flatline Tuesday as the Dow Jones Industrial Average looked to build on its fourth positive day in a row, per CNBC.

“Investors on Monday carried over the bullish market sentiment from Friday, when the latest nonfarm payrolls data showed that job growth came in below expectations in April and unemployment ticked higher,” CNBC reported. “The results alleviated concerns that the economy was too hot and raised optimism around rate cuts from the Federal Reserve.”

2. Federal government getting into AI

According to the Washington Post, MITRE, a tech supplier to the Pentagon and U.S. intelligence agencies, “is building a $20 million supercomputer with buzzy chipmaker Nvidia to speed deployment of artificial-intelligence capabilities across the U.S. federal government.”

In a release on Tuesday, MITRE says the project could improve everything from Medicare to taxes.

“There’s huge opportunities for AI to make government more efficient,” said Charles Clancy, senior vice president of MITRE, per WP. “Government is inefficient, it’s bureaucratic, it takes forever to get stuff done … That’s the grand vision, is how do we do everything from making Medicare sustainable to filing your taxes easier?”

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Magnolia Tribune

This article was produced by Magnolia Tribune staff.