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James Gill: Not much chance for DA and judge to make up

Advocate file photo by A.J. SISCO  --  Orleans Parish District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro delivers a speech at Dr. Martin Luther King Charter School in New Orleans' Lower Ninth Ward in 2014.

Some judges like to play kissy face with prosecutors, but Laurie White, of New Orleans Criminal District Court, is not one of them. If presiding over a trial, however, even she would hardly opine that District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro is a liar and political whore. Although she did not put it quite that baldly, her meaning was… Continue reading →

Letters: Spending cuts need to begin

With the passage of time, our “do-gooders” have augmented entitlement programs and grants so that we resemble the runaway steam locomotive that is sure to crash. To put the problem in simple terms, divide the $26 billion state budget among the state’s population as estimated by the U.S. Census Bureau on April 1, as being 4,533,476 men, women… Continue reading →

Letters: Climate change denier wrong on many points

To gin up his lowball number in his recent letter to the editor, Loren Scott focuses on papers expressing no opinions in their abstract. From this, Scott wrongly concludes that every researcher who did not directly state the relationship between human activity and warming reject the correlation! Should we apply Scott’s logic to the links between smoking and… Continue reading →

Our Views: A coup on chemicals for Vitter

FILE - In this April 28, 2016 file photo, President Barack Obama speaks in the Brady Press Briefing Room in Washington. President Barack Obama is announcing new steps to reduce gun violence, mainly by helping manufacturers understand what law enforcement agencies need from so-called smart guns. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

All the trappings of legislative success: a formal signing at the White House, praise for bipartisan problem-solving, a picture in The New York Times. And we can only imagine how U.S. Sen. David Vitter felt when the Times applauded the bipartisan success story, led by U.S. Sen. Tom Udall, D-New Mexico. Tom Udall?… Continue reading →

Guest column: School leaders need flexibility on discipline

Ben Kleban

On Tuesday, while speaking at the National Association of Public Charter Schools conference in Nashville, Tennessee, U.S. Secretary of Education John King called on charter school leaders to rethink school discipline. As the founder of New Orleans College Prep, a network of four schools serving over 1,500 students in pre-K through 12th grade, I have… Continue reading →

Letters: Louisiana’s budget progress nothing to scoff at

Regarding your editorial belittling progress on the budget, “A long march to nowhere.” Really?! You must have lost sight of where we began this “year” (even now, not yet six months into John Bel Edwards’ administration). We started $2 billion in the hole, with every fund-sweeping, asset-selling, expense-deferring, non-recurring revenue trick depleted by the prior… Continue reading →

Our Views: Brexit bruises La. fortunes

There always will be an England, the poets tell us, and maybe that ought to be our economic guidance now. In today’s world, the British Isles are not a foggy distance but a here-and-now trade partner, one of the top 10 destinations for Louisiana goods and services. British companies are major investors in… Continue reading →

Letters: It’s never been easier (or more vital) to donate blood

Area blood banks are low on blood and blood products (platelets and plasma) and always are running on the very edge of available supply versus need. Certain blood types often are in critical need. Additionally, summertime places a double-bind on the system. Demands rise due to injuries, while donations lag due to busy summer vacation schedules. Blood donation… Continue reading →

Grace Notes: Why New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu is eager to campaign for Hillary Clinton

Advocate photo by SOPHIA GERMER -- Mayor Mitch Landrieu delivers his State of the City speech at the Refresh Project Rooftop in New Orleans, Tuesday June 21, 2016.

As national convention season nears, the political press is filled with reports of Republicans planning to steer clear of Cleveland, where Donald Trump is expected to claim the party’s nomination. Expect the same dynamic out on the campaign trail, where GOP politicians are busy maneuvering to avoid appearing alongside the man at the top of the… Continue reading →

Letters: Limited government was a loser

Timmy Teepell’s comments on the motivations for the Republican destruction of the Louisiana budget are a shoe that has finally dropped in our conversation for the direction of the state. He is absolutely correct when he says Bobby Jindal was motivated by a “limited” (really nonexistent) government conservative philosophy.… Continue reading →

Guest column: “Brexit” a symptom of EU’s failures rather than their cause

Mark Vail

Britain’s stunning vote to exit the European Union has damaged the short-term fortunes of the British economy, the United Kingdom’s chances for survival, and the prospects for European unity. Although its reasons are complex — a mixture of nationalism, nostalgia and anxiety about the economy and immigration — it clearly reflects disenchantment with Europe that goes… Continue reading →

Letters: Climate change rejection based on flawed logic

I would like to address some of the erroneous conclusions and fallacious logic that appear in a letter by Loren Scott. In his letter, he references a commentary piece published in The Wall Street Journal. There are two logical fallacies that occur here: 1) argument from authority (because it appears in… Continue reading →

In Toon with Walt Handelsman contest: Stand back!

Everybody loves fireworks, and this year we’re sure to have them all the way through the beginning of November. With Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton in full attack mode, it’s becoming a very volatile situation. BOOOOM! So what happened to the poor guy in this cartoon? You tell me! Keep it clean. Be creative. Be witty. Be wacky. Avoid the obvious… Continue reading →

Louisiana Spotlight: Question marks remain for taxpayers after special session’s end

Associated Press star reporter Melinda Deslatte in Baton Rouge, La., Monday, April 13, 2015. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

After 19 weeks of work, Louisiana’s lawmakers have gone home, but it will take months to figure out what they’ve done and how it impacts the state’s finances. The more than $26 billion state operating budget crafted by the House and Senate largely operates on best guesses. The Legislature entirely skipped dealing with a projected deficit from… Continue reading →

Letters: PETA’s way isn’t the right one for Mike VI

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- Mike VI, a Bengali-Siberian hybrid tiger and LSU's resident live mascot, grooms himself in his habitat, Thursday, February 25, 2016 on LSU's campus in Baton Rouge, La.

I am sitting down trying to figure out who appointed PETA to tell us what foods we shouldn’t eat and what type fur we shouldn’t wear. Don’t drink milk because it’s cruel to the cow. Now, they want to tell us that when this Mike The Tiger is gone, we shouldn’t get another… Continue reading →

Letters: Lee not a fitting name for Baton Rouge high school

Robert E. Lee fought to enslave selected children, not to educate them; his group even forbade educating selected children. Louisiana will be more historically correct and consistently responsible if Lee High School is renamed American Freedom High School, or something similar. More truth will be achieved if Angola Prison is renamed Robert… Continue reading →

Letters: Raising sales tax is a penalty for La. residents

I read in The Advocate that the weekly jobless claims increased in Louisiana. I think our state’s elected officials should take some business courses. Raising the sales tax discourages people from spending money. We need to get people to spend more money to help increase employment. Workers are not going to leave the state… Continue reading →

Letters: ‘Roots’ is historic example of African-American history

Cal Thomas should know that African Americans having survived slavery is an automatic “success.” His opinions in “Snoop Dogg hit the right notes” are callous, uninformed and misinformed, as is Snoop Dogg’s. African Americans are like every other American, working and striving to live a full and meaningful life.… Continue reading →

Letters: Clean up wasteful spending before raising taxes

I have been watching and reading about our state budget and how the broke we are. Gov. John Bel Edwards has increased taxes and is talking about doing this again. Before increasing any more taxes, Edwards and both state houses should take a look at several things. Let’s get to work… Continue reading →

Letters: Picking up the pieces of GOP’s principles

Your reader has noticed piles of discarded Republican and conservative principles laying out in residential yards. We will have trucks fanning out through various neighborhoods to pick up these discarded principles. Robert E. Gingles retired state employee Baton Rouge… Continue reading →

Sadow: With sessions over, Gov. John Bel Edwards can finally be a statesman for Louisiana

Now that Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards’ efforts to retain Louisiana’s oversized government have been somewhat stymied, he can respond as a statesman or a politician. Despite access to gubernatorial tools such as capital outlay horse trades and appropriations to reward friends and to punish enemies, Edwards found state government hundreds of millions… Continue reading →

Grace: Expect to see more of Gov. John Bel Edwards’ ‘Disappointed Dad’ face down the road

Advocate Photo by MARK BALLARD  Gov. John Bel Edwards told the state Board of Commerce and Industry on Friday that from here on he expects applications for exempting manufacturers from local property taxes to be tied to job creation and retention.

Following three consecutive legislative sessions, each of which ended in confusion over just what lawmakers were doing — or not doing — to address the state’s historic budget shortfall, Gov. John Bel Edwards on Friday once again donned his Disappointed Dad face and told the press that he’d hoped for better. At the end of the… Continue reading →

Our Views: LSU board should examine idea of Tin Roof official school beer because it sends 'bad message'

It’s certainly not a make-or-break financial issue for the university, but is it appropriate for there to be an official LSU beer? To be sure, the little Baton Rouge brewery started by LSU graduates, Tin Roof, is going to work with students on marketing plans via internships, and thus there are educational benefits… Continue reading →

Our Views: Brexit vote hits home in Louisiana

Louisiana has a striking reminder of the blood and treasure America has spent to advance a peaceful and prosperous Europe. It’s the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, which honors the warriors who did so much to nurture a Europe built on common ideals, not conflict and distrust. That goal continues… Continue reading →

Republican Party of Louisiana's executive director: More spending, taxing not things to promote

Your editorial board’s latest liberal bromide lobbying for more government spending and higher taxes left me scratching my head. When government spends more money than budgeted, it’s not a “time bomb” as your editorial board claims, nor a sinister plot by former Gov. Bobby Jindal to underestimate the amount of money government wants to spend, as you also… Continue reading →

Our Views: Collaborate on fiber network

Lafayette has benefited from a municipal fiber network that delivers high-speed internet service, but that is not the same as the proposal for a fiber network now being discussed in East Baton Rouge Parish. In the capital city, there is no city-owned utility system to create the same service as in Lafayette, but city-parish… Continue reading →

Letters: Louisiana taking big steps to rein in government

Louisiana made big steps in taking power away from an incoherent, disorganized, politicized government and bringing it back to “We The People” when it passed legislation regarding 1. New Orleans Charter Schools and 2. the call for a convention of states to propose amendments to the U.S. Constitution. Senate Bill 432 was signed… Continue reading →

Letters: New bill will protect living organ donors

Many living organ donors today experience higher premiums or denial of insurance coverage based solely on their status as a donor — but hopefully not for long. In late February, the Living Donor Protection Act was introduced in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. This bill will protect living organ donors by prohibiting insurance companies from denying… Continue reading →