| Overcast, 66 F (19 C)
| RSS | |



Arts · Politics · Crime
· Sports · Food ·
· Opinion · NOLA ·


Defender Picks



December 1st

Pelicans v. Grizzlies

Smoothie King Center, 7p.m.

Memphis takes on Nola


The Art of Giving

Ogden Museum, 5p.m.

A holiday shopping events


Until The Beat Stops

Garden District Book Shop, 6p.m.

A novel by Stella Mowen


Poetry: A Survivor’s Guide

Maple Street Book Shop, 7p.m.

Compilation by Mark Yakich



Saenger, 7:30p.m.

Broadway smash-hit


December 2nd

Tank and The Bangas Backyard Hangout

1032 St. Maurice St., 6p.m.

Also ft. The Original Pinettes Brass Band


A Dark and Stormy Night

The Arbor Room, 6:30p.m.

An evening of cocktails and ghost stories


Pelicans v. Rockets

Toyota Center, 7p.m.

Nola heads to Houston


Freeman’s: The Best New Writing on Arrival

Garden District Book Shop, 6p.m.

Compliation of writing about “arriving”


Cas Haley

Howlin’ Wolf, 10p.m.

In the Den


December 3rd

Ogden After Hours

Ogden, 5:30p.m.

This week ft. Roman Street


Prism Break

Zeitgeist, 6p.m.

An interactive video installation


The Butlers of Iberville Parish

Garden District Book Shop, 6p.m.

Dunboyne Plantation in the 1800s


An Evening with Lusher’s Creative Writing Program

Maple Street Book Shop, 5:30p.m.

Students read from their original work


December 4th

Newcomb Art Department Holiday Sale

Carroll Gallery, 10a.m.

Ft. works in glass, ceramics, printmaking, jewelry and more



Home for the Holidays

Peoples Health New Orleans Jazz Market, 8p.m.

Fundraiser honoring returned Nola homeowners


The Soul Stoned Fest

The Willow, 8:30p.m.

Art, music and visuals


Doombalaya & CakeWalk

Tipitina’s, 9p.m.

A couple Nola bands jam for the weekend


Pelicans v. Cavaliers

Smoothie King Center, 8:30p.m.

Cleveland comes to New Orelans


Friday Nights at NOMA

NOMA, 5p.m.

This week ft. Artist Perspective with John Barnes


December 5th

St. Nicholas Day Fair

French Market, 10a.m.

Ft. the Saint Nick Secondline, facepaint and more


Algiers Bonfire & Concert

Algiers Ferry Landing, 5p.m.

“A Riverfront Holiday Celebration”


12 Brews of Christmas

House of Blues, 6p.m.

$20 to taste 12 seasonal beers


NOLA Polar Express

Freret St. Publiq House, 8p.m.

Benefit for CASA New Orleans


3rd Annual Krampus Gras

The Voodoo Lounge, 10p.m.

Dancing, drinking and fundraising for Planned Parenthood


December 6th

White Christmas

Prytania, 10a.m.

Part of the Holiday Movie Series


Saints v. Panthers

Mercedes-Benz Superdome, 3:25p.m.

Carolina comes to Nola


Bikes Vs. Cars

Zeitgeist, 9p.m.

Bikes for change



Saenger, 2p.m.;7:30p.m.

Broadway smash-hit

Budget Battle Cry

GOP Treasurer Sideswipes Jindal Over 'Fond Illusion'

When it comes to the state's huge budget hole, John Kennedy isn't pursing his lips.
Louisiana lawmakers continue to debate and grind out the best ways of balancing the state budget, and State Treasurer John Kennedy released a public statement on the current proposal heading to the State legislature's floor, calling it, "A Fond Illusion."
Kennedy, a Republican now serving his fourth term as the State's Treasurer, oversees the $10.6 billion of investments held by the State of Louisiana. He is the man responsible for the safe keeping and disbursement of public money. This might be why Kennedy felt compelled to release a statement on March 4, detailing his professional opinion of the Jindal administration's proposed budget. It wasn't good.
"Call this budget what you like: a fond illusion or smart accounting," Treasurer Kennedy wrote. "The result will be the same: mid-year budget cuts for the sixth year in a row, because the budget is not balanced. Why should we care? Because making a college cut $10 million with six months left in the fiscal year is like a $20 million cut from day one. That shreds muscle, not fat."
Kennedy, who is no stranger to criticizing the Gov, paints a vivid picture of the current attempts to balance out budget deficits, by comparing the tactics being used by Government to poor finance choices when attempting to pay off a car loan—ideas such as taking out a cash advance, asking your school aged children to pay rent, or attempting to sell a boat (or bond?) for far more than its estimated value.
"Your plan may work-for a while," Kennedy says. "Then, as sure as 'eggs is eggs,' you'll go broke, just like Louisiana eventually will if the legislature passes the Jindal Administration's proposed— yet again—unbalanced budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1."
This analysis is in stark contrast to the images Jindal has been creating of the Louisiana economy in the national press—citing, "incredible progress growing our economy." Even more so because of Jindal's proposal to cut the private and business income taxes for the State.
Kennedy wrote out, in five points, the overarching plan for balancing out:
"1. Pretend the state will have an extra $800 million to spend as a result of the yet-to-be realized savings from leasing state hospitals to private hospitals, even though the leases have not been negotiated (a reference to the ongoing attempts to get the Mid-City Hospital in gear and properly funded).
2. Refinance the state's tobacco bonds (good idea) but dump the $90 million one-time savings into the operating budget and spend it next year (bad idea).
3. Propose to sell state real estate at inflated prices well above appraised value and spend the money before they sell.
4. Borrow $100 million from the New Orleans Convention Center to keep our colleges open while promising to repay the loan with the proceeds from future bond issues that will exceed the state's constitutional debt limit.
5. Raise college tuition 10% for Louisiana students, who already owe $900 million in student loans, despite the fact that education is the new currency of our global economy and 8% fewer Louisianans have a college degree than the rest of America."
Kennedy them surmised his argument by saying, "There's a better way. It's not complicated: don't spend more than you take in, and when you do spend money, spend it on things you need, not things you simply want. Louisiana families know that. So do Louisiana businesses. Why can't government figure it out?"
All the more ironic really, given how much Jindal has been sniping up at the White House and President Obama (both in the press and in social media) about uncontrolled spending and an unwieldy and growing government.
"...the Obama years will be remembered as the Era of Government Greed," Gov. Jindal recently wrote. "There isn’t a problem President Obama thinks can’t be solved by more taxes and more spending. His solution is always to take more money out of the American economy and put it into the government."
"It’s time for [the President] to send to Congress a list of reductions that preserves critical services," Jindal wrote in the National Review. "Every governor has had to balance budgets during tough economic times...It’s time for the president to stop campaigning, stop deploying scare tactics, and do his job."
Like he's been doing with his plan to axe the state income tax, Gov. Jindal deployed the Division of Administration to respond Treasurer's statements, the Division of Administration has.
The Division of Administration performs a wide-range of tasks, including general management of all state finances, preparing the Executive Budget and the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). The Commissioner of Administration, Kristy Nichols, responded the Treasurer's statement, detailing and dismissing each of Kennedy's arguments and analogies, point for point.
“The reality is that the budget is balanced, makes state government more effective and less expensive for taxpayers and continues to help foster an environment where businesses want to invest and create jobs," Nichols said. "At the same time, our budget also protects K-12 schools, colleges and universities and healthcare services.”
And keeping it above the belt, Nichols almost right out the gate pointed out that the Treasurer is showing his political motivations in some of his points (in this case the Hospital bond funding issue) and Nichols also alleges the treasurer's incompetence.
"Treasurer Kennedy reveals himself to be an opponent of reforming the old Charity Hospital model, not to mention that he apparently does not know how to read the budget."
Nichols goes on to detail the figures the administration has on the Hospital funding, which is far less than the $800 million Kennedy cites. She also defends several of the other ideas ridiculed by Treasurer Kennedy, including selling assets above the appraised value.
"Again, the Treasurer exposes himself as a big government defender of the status quo who would rather keep underutilized property in government’s hands instead of downsizing government’s footprint and returning the property to the private sector."
As the budget is continually hashed out between now and July (when the next fiscal budget kicks in) funding, bond sales, and tax cuts will continue to cause debate on how best to improve the state of the State.
Here's the full documents, as released by Kennedy and Nichols:

First, the Treasurer:

And, the Jindal Administration:



view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter


Dead Huey Long, Emma Boyce, Elizabeth Davas, Ian Hoch, Lindsay Mack, Anna Gaca, Jason Raymond, Lee Matalone, Phil Yiannopoulos, Joe Shriner, Chris Staudinger, Chef Anthony Scanio, Tierney Monaghan, Stacy Coco, Rob Ingraham,

Staff Writers

Cheryl Castjohn, Sam Nelson

Theatre Critic

Michael Martin


Brandon Roberts, Rachel June, Daniel Paschall

Film Critic

Jason Raymond


Paolo Roy

Art Director:

Michael Weber, B.A.


B. E. Mintz

Published Daily by

Minced Media, Inc.

Editor Emeritus

Stephen Babcock