That House Bill 44 has cleared some very important procedural hurdles and remains very much alive, now assigned to the House Judiciary committee. On the not so good news front it appears Representative Richard Bennett of Long Beach may have snookered the Sun Herald last month. I mention this because in January the paper ran a story about Bennett working with Auditor Pickering to insure every state agency is audited. Heck, they even did an editorial on it. I know I’ve been checking periodically to see how Bennett’s legislation is doing and everytime I go to his legislative web page this is what I see on that issue:
That’s right folks, it appears Bennett was blowing smoke up Stan Tiner’s hiney which is likely why we got this OpEd today:
I see Nancy Parker stayed clear of the pool area.
I’ve sat back and watched the spectacular disaster that is the Jefferson Parish hospital privatization effort unfold as told by the beat gang at both the NOLA.com and the Advocate and I certainly came away wanting more information and even more important perspective. Call me a harsh critic folks but I’m not feeling it from the beat as it appears on this issue the newspapers have become mere mouthpieces for the politicians.
The history of the process and the attempts of Chris Roberts, Elton LaGasse and Ricky Templet to derail it are too numerous to mention in the limited time I have this morning. There the newspapers have done a decent job following the gyrations albeit sans any useful analysis but there are a couple of examples of reporting where I read the news and came away thinking, “Myers sure had someone blowing mega smoke up his ass” or “Quinlan is giving Roberts another redo”. I know they are better than the slop being served but it is what it is. First up from the smoke up Ben’s ass files I have this from January:
In this piece the Parish council is thoroughly infantilized by Myers, who pinned the blame that day for the disaster on the Hospital Boards and the consultant hired by the Parish. The fix for Children’s Hospital had been in for way longer than last September. In fact astute political observers who speak to Slabbed on the condition of anonymity indicate Children’s Continue reading “News schizophrenia on the Jeff Parish Hospital Beat while the reasons for Chris Robert’s SBA default come into sharper focus”
Thursday, February 6th, 2014
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
IS LOUISIANA A JUDICIAL HELLHOLE?
According to several watchdog organizations, Louisiana has one of the worst judicial climates in the country. The state has been given the dubious title of the nation’s judicial hellhole by several neutral watchdog groups. Campaign funds given to a judicial candidate are often cited as possibly influencing future judicial decisions. Some are advocating the appointment of judges in order to do away with the pressure on judicial candidates to raise campaign contributions. So is this the solution? Is appointing rather than electing judges the way to go in Louisiana?
But this raises the question — who will do the picking. To paraphrase Huey Long, “I’m all for appointin’ judges as long as I get to do the appointin’.” After all, most appointed judges receive their job through the good ole’ boy network. It’s not what you know, but who you know, and few get these plumb appointments for life without being well plugged in to the political system. So those who sanctimoniously talk about the politics involved in electing judges are turning a blind eye to the heavy-handed politics of an appointed system.
There has been virtually no monitoring or policing of appointed judges on either the federal or state level. If there are any abuses on the bench, the other judges just turn their heads and refuse to pass judgment on their peers. This is true even if judges on a higher court are involved. So it is obvious that it will take more public scrutiny to see that appointed judges who put themselves in conflicting situations are held more accountable.
And what about the influence of campaign contributions that are accepted by those seeking to step up to the bench and wear black robes? No doubt about it. Campaign contributions pose a great problem for those who want impartiality. Continue Reading……………..