While everyone was running for cover from Tuesday's storm, Louisiana's Ways and Means Committee sent 31 bills to the House for a vote. Today, that vote will happen. This could be the crucial moment in our budget crisis. Will taxophobic Republicans balk on passing new taxes or will they bite the bullet to ensure there is a state in which to seek reelection? This piece gives a rundown on the issues that were forwarded - pointing out which ones the committee saw as favorable and which ones they saw as unfavorable. Here's another thing that makes today important: this Advocate piece estimates that the special session is going to cost us $1 million. If it doesn't work, there will be more sessions and bills (and deeper cuts and more taxes?). Do it right the first time and there never has to be a second.
Sheriff Newell Normand may have just started his bid for governor. The Republican ripped Bobby Jindal to pieces, calling him a better cult leader than Jim Jones. Normand takes on the Republicans who blame John Bel Edwards - one month and half into office - for our mess and whine about Obama. He notes the problems we will now face because leaders have pledged to not raise taxes and says to hell with Grover Norquist. Lamar White posts his entire speech. It is a great read.
Meanwhile, JR Ball says let's be like Texas - property taxes should be raised instead of sales taxes. Uhm, you talking about my lot and a half, man?
The flap up about Capt. Clay Higgins' Gremlins video continues as Sheriff Bobby Guidroz has asked Higgins to tone it down. Sheriff, you don't cuddle with Higgins - you strap yourself in and feel the Gs!
Remember how Bobby Jindal gave all those tax breaks in the name of attracting business to our state? And how he said it would all pay dividends in end? Yeah, that was wrong. A survey by 24/7 Wall St. puts Louisiana as the second-worst state in the nation for business. So, like that kid who tries to hard to be your friend, we may be business friendly but apparently no one wants to be friends with us. (On the other hand, this guest editorial says our tax incentives have brought us business.)
This will fix the budget. Legalize the herb, tax it and they will smoke it. We are talking serious green, son. N alienz cos they invnted earth bruh ...
Bad news: eight Louisiana universities were placed on Moody’s Investors Service watch liat for credit downgrades because of higher education cuts. Good News: it was only eight. Good News to Us: UL Lafayette was not on the list.
John Bel Edwards accused John Kennedy of using our budget issues as a way to further his Senate campaign, or, as the Advocate puts it, Edwards is "ratcheting up" their feud. Uhm, you just noticed this JBE? You might as well enter the race because John Kennedy is running against you even though you aren't even running. Looks like we know who is going to main event Wrestlemania.
Last week, Pamela Anderson suggested Louisiana's prisons go vegan, a move she says would save the state some $620,000 a year. Arizona did the same and Anderson goes to the prisons to cook for inmates. She says she would do the same here (I'm sure the prisoners would have liked that like, say, 20 years ago). While the state's correction department says no thanks - prisoners were ticked when we took away their cigarettes, let's not make it worse by removing meat - they should reconsider. Think about how much of a crime deterrent this would be: if you go to prison you have to be a vegan!
The national daily distraction involving the Apple vs FBI hits home as CBS looks at a Louisiana case where a pregnant woman was murdered and her locked smart phone might hold clues. This one is a toughie, or maybe not - the privacy of a dead woman vs catching her killer. If something ever happens to me, please feel free to hack my phone. You won't find much other than about 600 pics of my kids, notes that might mean something only to me and the dimensions for my air conditioner filter. Better yet, no, don't open it. This is one issue that seems to unite Liberals and Conservatives. Let us rejoice in this one moment of unity ans use it to distract ourselves from all that we should be thinking about.