Section Commentary

In defense of public broadcasting

The $1.35 cents that each American pays in taxes per year to support the Corporation for Public Broadcasting is negligible when compared with the alternative: the arid and insipid wasteland of commercial programming.

Delay, delay till after Election Day

Third Circuit Court of Appeal Candidate Candyce Perret now knows The IND will get to see at least portions of the lawsuits her ex-fiancé filed against her, but she is holding onto hope we won't be able to publish what's in them till after the April 29 runoff.

Is this now Susan Theall’s race to lose?

As Candyce Perret's credibility issues mount and fundraising dries up, the once inconceivable seems plausible — that she could outspend Susan Theall 7-1 and still lose the runoff for 3rd Circuit Court of Appeal.

LPSB answers the misinformation

When you step inside the voting booth April 29, you’ll have the opportunity to vote on a contract between taxpayers and our school system.

The Multiplier Effect

The election of Donald Trump has rallied liberals like never before. Could the 2018 midterms be another pivot point? History says yes.

CROSS WISE: Term of Endearment

With a Republican-controlled Legislature running interference, can Gov. John Bel Edwards parlay public support into a second term?

CROSS WISE: Red River Blues

As with the rest of the country, declining opportunities in Louisiana’s rural parishes engender the ideal conditions for a Donald Trump candidacy.


The Louisiana Family Forum’s dogged focus on culture war issues — and culture war issues alone — prevents it from actually addressing the real issues that face Louisiana families.


In a crowded 3rd District race, it nonetheless remains choppy water for Democrats.

Beam: GOP derailing tax proposals

Once again, longtime American Press columnist emerges as voice of reason in debate over how to plug the state’s $600 million shortfall.

CROSS WISE: Trump’s Trump Card

Can an ill-tempered, thrice-married billionaire dandy win the hearts of Louisiana evangelicals, much less rank-and-file voters?

Beam: Edwards has fought good fight

American Press columnist lets the facts get in the way, giving new guv much-deserved pat on the back for hard-fought effort to right the ship.

A second penny is a bridge too far

The deal being offered by big business interests to solve Louisiana’s historic budget shortfall puts too much of the burden on working families that can least absorb a tax increase.

Politics and populism: the Long view

Four years ago, former Speaker Newt Gingrich, in his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination, spent an afternoon talking with the students and faculty of Louisiana College, a tiny school b

Legs To Stand On

It’s time for the Louisiana Legislature to exert the independence granted it in the state constitution.

Transparent transition?

Joel Robideaux’s reliance on a well-connected lobbying firm to set the table for his tenure as mayor-president deserves a few raised eyebrows.

Friday Pooyie

The good, the bad and the just plain crazy of this week

Vitter no veni, no vici

Surprise, surprise. There's a gubernatorial debate in town and David Vitter won't be there.

Bobby Jindal is a liar

Jindal once again repeated the lie that he cut the Louisiana state budget by 26 percent — and laid off 30,000 "bureaucrats" while governor. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Secretary of State Tom Schedler running a racist campaign

This statewide elected official believes proposals in favor of automatic voter registration, which are currently being debuted in Oregon, amount to nothing more than a manipulative way of ensuring an illegal attempt among African-American Democrats to engage in widespread, politically motivated intimidation and voter fraud.

Really, Daily Advertiser, a gun show?

Just a little over a week after Lafayette buried an unbelievably talented favorite daughter who was senselessly murdered at the Grand Theatre, you’re including a gun show among the “17 ways to occupy the family this weekend"?

Some things never change

That’s especially so when it comes to District 4 school board member Tehmi Chassion and his behind-the-scenes antics and never-ending pursuit of control over his alma mater Northside High.

Advocate publisher should not run for governor

What is so disturbing about all this is the unavoidable conclusion that Mr. Georges, an intelligent man, has failed to comprehend the dangers implicit in a potential run for governor — or, that he does, but just doesn’t care.

Dear former Gov. Jindal ...

I read with interest your take on the tragic events in Chattanooga Thursday and marveled at the breathtaking speed with which you managed to exploit a tragedy for political gain.

Hot Air Apparent

If the bombastic David Vitter ascends to the governor’s office, who is his likely replacement in the Senate?

The lame swiftboating of Mark Garber

In giving voice to a non-issue, The Daily Advertiser overlooks a big question implied by its own article: What were the other three sheriff candidates doing while Mark Garber risked his life serving his country?

Et tu, Alfred Mouton?

As New Orleans launches a city conversation on the many monuments to the Confederacy there in the wake of the killings in Charleston, S.C., should we in Lafayette be asking ourselves the same questions?

Jindal’s dishonest scheme: Even fellow Republicans are embarrassed by this one

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s efforts to conceal a series of tax increases might not only undermine his presidential ambitions; the bizarre scheme he forced upon the state’s legislature to do it could eventually compromise the renowned anti-tax increase pledge created by Grover Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform.

Con-profit group insists La.’s creationism law isn’t about creationism

Nearly seven years after it was signed into law and despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, David Klinghoffer, a blogger for the Discovery Institute, a con-profit organization based in Washington state, continues to insist that the Louisiana Science Education Act has absolutely nothing to do with promoting the teaching of creationism and its fraternal twin, intelligent design, in the public school science classroom.

CROSS-WISE: The State They Gave Away

As the contentious process of addressing a $1.6 billion dollar deficit drags into June, legislators would do well to remember that much of their suffering is self-inflicted.

Full of sound and fury, signifying nothing

Less than 24 hours after Gov. Bobby Jindal announced the formation of a presidential exploratory committee, a state house committee, in a 10-2 vote, effectively killed the only bill he had expressly endorsed during the current legislative session.

Will La. soon provide millions in public incentives for religious theme parks?

If signed into law, House Bill 771 — a bill authored and proposed by Louisiana’s newest and most controversial state legislator — could provide tens of millions of dollars in taxpayer incentives to subsidize the construction of large-scale theme parks by tax-exempt churches and religious organizations.

CROSS WISE: Second in Command

Has the time come for Louisiana to consider a governor/lieutenant governor “ticket” to better manage the state?

K-Bou, You Da Man!

City-Parish Councilman Kenneth Boudreaux slays some hypocrites during the final meeting of April.

Broken yet unbreakable

Drew Landry’s going to be fine. You’ll hear about this in a song soon enough.

Chad Leger, supporters show their true colors

Mike Neustrom proved brains could be more effective than brawn, and after 15 years and four terms, he’s preparing to leave behind one of the most progressive sheriff’s offices in the state. That's why picking the right successor is paramount.

Jindal invested too much in 'gold standard' of ethics reform

A few weeks ago, on the coat tails of The Advocate's request, I sent Thomas Enright, Bobby Jindal’s executive counsel, an identical public records request: I also wanted any and all e-mails the governor had sent and received on his account, the same demand he had made of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

About those Festival VIP packages

The Ind is giving some away as part of an online sweepstakes and those who can afford to are snapping them up, but some see Festival International’s new (VIP) Festival Pass program as a violation of the egalitarian spirit of the annual event.

Indiana Jonesing

Newbie GOP state rep and culture warrior Mike Johnson of Bossier City wants to one-up the Hoosier State — at the risk of Louisiana’s $5 billion-per-year tourism industry.

Legalize it

In a place where drive-thru daiquiris are legal and guns are loosely regulated, it seems silly that buying and selling something as natural as raw milk is criminal.

Cross-wise: One to Watch

Right now it’s Boudreaux vs. Thierry in District 24, but for real excitement don’t count incumbent Elbert Guillory out just yet.

Vote yes on Saturday

Or, Animal Lovers Unite, because if you care about Lafayette Parish’s population of stray pets, you’ll vote in favor of the tax-consolidation plan.

This week in boxer shorts

Or, the quixotic folly of trying to legislate away urban culture by peeing on the First Amendment

Breaking up with Bobby Jindal

Former Louisiana Republican operative and new media director to the 2011 Bobby Jindal campaign, Taylor Huckaby recalls the birth, life and death of his confidence in the Jindal brand.

The Durel Factor

Voters who want to see JoDu’s important initiatives completed or broadened will favor his right-hand man in the race to replace him.

The concession speech Jindal won't give

Here’s how Gov. Bobby Jindal’s presidential campaign will probably end: he will finish sixth or seventh in the Iowa caucuses about this time next year.

Breaking the Internet

Robin May’s picture of Bobby Jindal’s office portrait proves a picture is worth way more than a thousand words.

Inside the controversial prayer rally

“That belt buckle!” Robin exclaimed. “Did you see that belt buckle? It said, ‘Governor Bobby Jindal, State of Louisiana,' and it had a fleur-de-lis in the middle.”

Steve Scalise, David Duke, and why the past is never dead

Before I broke the story about Congressman Steve Scalise’s attendance at a white nationalist conference hosted by David Duke’s hate group, I knew there was one enormous risk: I would likely be handing David Duke a microphone.

Oh Boy: LPSB picks Tommy Angelle as its prez

The haze from all the Kumbaya around the campfire vibes still hover thick over LPSB’s seven freshly seated members, but even though it’s been less than a month, they’ve also been busy making big decisions.

Lafayette is doomed

OK, doomed is too strong a word — we wanted to get your attention — but something happened at Tuesday’s City-Parish Council meeting that should have every resident of the city of Lafayette concerned.

Steve Scalise and why the cover-up is always worse

A week ago, I broke the story about Steve Scalise; since then, the story has been picked up by the national and international media, and as a result, we now know a lot more about the event, its organizers, its agenda, and its participants.

Barry and Bobby

From two different worlds away, their fathers had always believed in the promise of America, and when they finally got the opportunity to study and work at an American university, they didn’t think twice. They packed up everything they had, and they flew across oceans to be here.

Steve Scalise and white supremacy

According to recently uncovered posts on Stormfront, the Internet’s oldest and most notorious white nationalist and neo-Nazi forum, U.S. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-Louisiana) was an honored guest and speaker at an international conference of white supremacist leaders in 2002.

Barry and Bobby

From two different worlds away, their fathers had always believed in the promise of America, and when they finally got the opportunity to study and work at an American university, they didn’t think twice.

A Louisiana 'Liberal'

Three weeks ago, along with my friend Jason Brad Berry of The American Zombie, I broke a story about Bill Cassidy’s questionable dual employment with Louisiana State University while also serving in Congress.

Jindal's whackadoo prayer rally

To say that the death and destruction wrought by Hurricane Katrina was God’s way of punishing gay people, it’s crazy right? Not to our governor.

Mary Landrieu for Governor?

A week after Mary Landrieu lost her seat in the U.S. Senate to Congressman Bill Cassidy, several prominent Louisiana Democrats are hoping that the three-term senator will become a candidate for Louisiana governor.

Lie in our Graves

Tuesday night, in what very well may be the final debate of his long and colorful career in Louisiana politics, former Governor Edwin Edwards, now running for Congress, came out swinging.

Another slap in Cooper's face?

It was only a few months ago when the LPSB held the school system's purse strings with a death grip, but oh how board President Hunter Beasley's demeanor seems to be changing with the ouster of...

What next for LPSS?

The Pat Cooper era ended ugly (and early). Can we still rally behind the Turnaround Plan? Wayne Vasher, Michael Zolkowski. James Easton. Pat Cooper. We in Lafayette have a well-oiled superintendent...

Racism: The elephant in Louisiana's living room

How could anyone, particularly the governor of Louisiana, overlook or ignore 250 years of slavery, the Civil War, white-only primaries, generations of codified housing and employment...

Why I'm with Mary

What we need and deserve is a leader with the muscle to bring people together, and in a state as divided as Louisiana, no one has been better at cobbling together coalitions and representing a broad...

Constitutional amendments: We recommend ...

A common thread runs through many of those we oppose: Enshrining in the Constitution protections on programs and their funding sources has had a disastrous effect on Louisiana's most important...

The Case for Cams

In the wake of the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson, Mo., law enforcement agencies nationwide are embracing body cameras for officers. It's time law enforcement in Lafayette follows suit.

Mike Harson is a socialist

Actually he’s not, but in this age of say anything, which the Harson campaign has perfected, we thought, What the hell?’

Open letter to Rep. Charles Boustany

Ebola is kind of terrifying if you watch too much Fox News and CNN. Especially Fox, which makes everything look terrifying because, well, War on Christmas and Obama and all. Dear Congressman, You and...

An unforgiveable offense

In what world does it make sense to balance the budget for a public school system by cutting schools from the poorest neighborhoods with the worst performance scores and the highest at-risk student...

The sad demise of the La. Democratic Party

After the Louisiana Democratic Party (endorsed Edwin Edwards), I drove to the East Baton Rouge Parish Governmental Building to change my party registration to "none." Former Gov. Edwin...

Knezek already taking the gloves off

"This is yet another example of the failed leadership and lack of focus that Hunter Beasley has exhibited. He's shown zero regard for kids, teachers or even passing a budget for the school year...

Former Gauthe attorney slams Advertiser op-ed

"Just as the devil does not deserve equal time with God, and a lie does not deserve equal time with the truth, the remarks of William Donahue have no place in any respectable journal seriously...

Seven witnesses, two stories

The city prosecutor has released the case file for Lafayette Parish School Board member Tehmi Chassion's simple battery complaint against Superintendent Pat Cooper, and the seven witness statements...

Case closed

Citing conflicting witness accounts, the city prosecutor will not pursue Tehmi Chassion's allegation of simple battery against Superintendent Pat Cooper. LPSB's Tehmi Chassion shares a moment with...

PAR: Leadership and Crisis in Education

In the fight over Common Core, Louisiana state government is failing its citizens and the governor is chiefly responsible. Louisiana state government is failing its duty to provide leadership and...

A levee board lawsuit update from John Barry

No doubt many of you are wondering what's going on with the flood authority's lawsuit against numerous oil companies. I can assure you, It's alive! [Editor's Note: This letter from former Southeast...

A Rainy Day Indeed

The Lafayette Parish School Board proved at a June 26 budget meeting it is willing to soak students and teachers before giving an inch to Superintendent Pat Cooper. Photos by Robin May Board...

LPSS employee surveys rile up conspiracy theorists

Surveys sent out to thousands of employees in the Lafayette Parish School System to gauge their opinions on student-teacher ratios and a 2002 tax fund hit a few snags, prompting a number of crazy...

Where is the public outrage?

A majority of Lafayette Parish School Board members are dead-set on destroying the school system - content to watch it burn while they are no longer in office. A majority of Lafayette Parish School...

Why Cooper's evaluation was a joke

This year's evaluation of Superintendent Pat Cooper was an exercise in futility, nothing more than a tool for some LPSB members to pave the way for his termination. This year's evaluation of...

It's teacher v. teacher on bonus check issue

What's more important: a bonus paycheck for teachers or saving about 150 teaching jobs at at-risk schools of the Lafayette Parish School System? What's more important: a bonus paycheck for teachers or...

OK, here's the deal with Zach Dasher

This guy represents - William F. Buckley Jr. wherefore art thou! - the paranoid, know-nothing wing of the GOP, and mainline Republicans should be fed up. Zach Dasher has two things going for him in...

The truth about charter schools

The anti-charter school contingency can blame charters for the system's financial crisis till it's blue in the face. But that won't change the facts. Lafayette Charter Renaissance Academy The...

What is Mark Allen Babineaux smoking?

Mark Allen Babineaux doesn't like Superintendent Cooper's turnaround plan so much that he's willing to violate state and federal laws to gut it. It was like a tale of two cities Thursday night for...

Has Don Briggs seen the light?

LOGA President Don Briggs' relationship with The Daily Advertiser's editorial board (until recently he was a citizen member) has always been questionable, but even more suspect is his new claim before...

Robideaux proves he can carry LOGA's water

Rep. Joel Robideaux came out swinging Thursday to retroactively kill a New Orleans levee board's lawsuit against 97 oil and gas companies for damages to the coastline. Rep. Joel Robideaux came out...

LPSB's Babineaux afraid of community input?

The reaction of one member of the LPSB to a community feedback initiative wasn't what you'd expect from a community leader who's supposed to be accountable to the voters. Photo by Robin May LPSB's...

An Ace defense

Downtowner Miranda Tait believes the arrest and ultimately the lack of prosecution of 9/11 vandal' Salvador "Ace" Perez is a teachable moment. Our cliché, not hers. [Editor's Note: Miranda...

Praising a Settlement

It took nearly a decade, more than $1 million in attorneys’ fees and countless hours of negotiations, but Lafayette Consolidated Government and firefighters and policemen have hammered out the final...

The Trust Factor

In 1990, David Manuel's departure to San Antonio was a major loss. Manuel was a professor of economics at UL Lafayette for 12 years before ascending to dean of the College of Business Administration,...

Oct. 20 Constitutional amendment recommendations

This Saturday, in addition to local and statewide races, Louisiana voters will be asked to vote on four constitutional amendments. Regular voters are used to constitutional amendments being part of...

Patrick LeBlanc's Troubling Candidacy

Longtime Lafayette Parish School Board Member Mike Hefner is having a hard time coming to terms with why some of Lafayette's more prominent business people are continuing to support Pat LeBlanc's...

Corruption and Justice

In June 2005, The Independent Weekly published an investigative cover story ("Foggy Contract Breakdown") revealing that Iberia Parish President Will Langlinais had extended millions of...

Vote Yes for Lafayette tax renewals

At first glance, this Saturday's election hardly seems to be a pivotal one. No elected officials, new taxes or constitutional amendments are at stake. But the votes cast this weekend on four tax...

A Week on the Streets

In the past year, Lafayette's homeless population has received a whole new level of attention. There have been frequent stories in the local media about an increase in the local homeless population '...

No-Geaux Breaux

John Breaux's decision last week not to run for governor of Louisiana ultimately wasn't surprising ' which makes it even more damaging to Breaux's reputation in his home state, and more embarrassing...

The Delusional Daily Advertiser

Three weeks ago, The Independent Weekly published our open letter to Gov. Kathleen Blanco urging her not to run for re-election. With endless dissections of her post-Katrina performance and the...

Impeach Will Langlinais

It's been nearly two weeks since a state audit of financial transactions by Iberia Parish President Will Langlinais has been released to the public. Langlinais has served Iberia Parish since 1977 as a...

Get Your Daily Buzz with The INDsider

This week, The Independent Weekly launches a free online news service unlike anything else in Acadiana. Before I give you the details, I thought this was an opportune time for a brief reminder about...

Our Recommendations on Taxes and Amendments

Two taxes, two different recommendations Today's economy makes voters inherently wary of supporting increased taxes. Increased health care, housing and insurance costs are just a few of the economic...

Our Constitutional Amendment Recommendations

Louisiana voters should plan on spending more time than usual in the voting booth this Saturday, Sept. 30. In addition to the elections for Commissioner of Insurance, Secretary of State and several...

Da Bog: C'mon In. The Water's Fine.

This Wednesday, Sept. 13, The Independent Weekly launches our own blog, Da Bog, at Part of the challenge in publishing a weekly newspaper is deadlines and space constraints. Since...

One Year Later

Two weeks ago I spoke at the Lafayette Rotary Club's weekly meeting and shared my thoughts on the role of Louisiana media in the post-Katrina and post-Rita era. I was a bit underdressed than most of...

Just Say Yes

There aren't any candidates to vote for in the upcoming special election on Saturday, July 15, but Lafayette voters who care about the city's libraries, roads, school system and environmental efforts...

Keeping His Promise

President George W. Bush recently sent out 1.4 million Christmas cards with the following message: "With best wishes for a holiday season of hope and happiness [in] 2005." There are a lot of...

Open Letter to Authement: Kill the Deal

It's been two months since The Independent Weekly first uncovered the UL Lafayette horse farm deal; since that time, the proposed land swap has created such a stench that it's time to clear the air....

Trying to Move Forward

The lobby of the public health clinic at the Clifton Chenier Center has been transformed into a large waiting room. Last Tuesday morning, patients filled out medical forms, nurses hurriedly ran back...

Politics and Perseverance

For most of last week ' the second week following Hurricane Katrina making landfall ' it was hard not to be enraged. FEMA Director Michael Brown, the man with the dubious résumé who was fired from his...

Vote Yes for Fiber on July 16

More than a year after Lafayette Utilities System first introduced its initiative to provide fiber-to-the-home to Lafayette residents, the issue goes to a vote this Saturday, July 16. It's a landmark...

Winston Diel: 1954-2005

Our friend Winston Diel died recently. He was a fine, extraordinary man. But unknown to many of us, Winston suffered from acute depression, which led him to take his own life on Friday, April...

A Brand New Look

Behind the scenes here at 551 Jefferson St. for the last three months, we've been cooking up a big change ' and the results debut in this week's paper. When you turn to Page 6, you'll see a...


The Independent is pleased to welcome two accomplished contributors to our pages this week. Jim Engster, our new state politics columnist, has been a fixture in Louisiana political journalism for...


Since The Independent's launch in August 2003, business coverage has always been an essential component of our editorial mission. Acadiana's unique business community deserves that commitment; from...

View all sections »