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Tuesday, October 31, 2006 by Blogger

Open Thread: The Mayor's Race is One Week Away. What Are Your Predictions? Two other things: Today is the last day to vote early. If you're going to be busy on Super Tuesday, vote today. KALB is hosting a mayoral debate...err...conversation... on Thursday. Channel 5. 6:00- 6:30PM. The debate's format has been described as similar to "Meet the Press," which could be very interesting. And just like last time, we'll be liveblogging the debate...err conversation. So, remember to log onto CenLamar while you're watching the debate. It's fun for the whole family.

by Blogger

George W. Bush: Terrorists Will Win If Democrats Retake CongressThis photo appeared in today's Washington Post Online, capturing both a baby and a grown man weeping in the awesome presence of our President.

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

  • Correction: Previously, it had been reported that EMS's agreement with the City of Alexandria had been amended to reduce their compensation from 50% to 33%. Their fee was actually reduced to 20%. Despite this, the Brewer campaign continues to air a television commercial that states EMS will be receiving HALF of the CLECO settlement.
  • Watch the new Brewer ad online. Google Videos.
  • Ask the candidate forum with Senator Sam Brownback quickly turns into ridiculous free-for-all. Source: Yahoo Forums.
  • New York Times Essay: Computing in 2016: What Won't Be Possible?
  • Registrar of Voters: Early Voting Significantly Higher Than It Was During Primary.

Monday, October 30, 2006 by Blogger

KALB: There Will Be a Debate! Err... Conversation! Thursday, November 2, 2006. 6:00- 6:30 on Channel Five. And they're taking our questions. Send them to Michele Godard at mgodard@kalb.com.

by Blogger

Seven Year Old Girl Nearly Abducted Incident Occurred Near Jackson Street Extension
According to the Town Talk, a seven-year-old girl was nearly abducted today by an African-American male in his twenties, wearing a black leather jacket and driving a small silver car. The man apparently attempted to lure the young girl into his car by offering her candy, which was stuffed in the car's visor.

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

  • Pierce Bush, nephew to the President, has some hilarious photos of him partying with famous Austin weirdo, Leslie Cochran. Send Pierce a message on Facebook. View the photos here. (Warning: Photos capture the young Bush, who looks remarkably like a Bush, drinking Bud Light! And he's not 21 yet!). By the way, I posted this for you Austinians in Alexandria. You know who you are.
  • Another Movie Starring Sacha Baron Cohen (Ali G, Borat) Promises to Make Americans Uncomfortable. (For fans of Da Ali G Show, Cohen will be resurrecting the character Bruno). Source: The Defamer.
  • Virginia Senate Candidate George Allen Needs to Explain His Multiple Arrest Warrants. Source: Americablog.
  • Fans Bail on the Saints. Source: Sun Herald.
  • Governor Blanco is in Asia. Saying Hello to KilgoreSmith and KhamAbiding. Source: AP.

by Blogger

Crooks and Liars: SNL's Glimpse Into the Final Week of RNC Television Ads Warning: This is a Saturday Night Live Skit, and as such, it's offensive and hilarious on many levels. In other words, it may not be safe for work, and it's probably not appropriate for children. Download here in WMV format. And here in QuickTime format.

Sunday, October 29, 2006 by Blogger

Who Is Reading CenLamar?Click on Image to Zoom In
This map indicates the locations of the last 100 unique visitors of CenLamar. (Well, almost all of them. The site also received a visitor from Japan. Konichiwa. And China. Hey Daniel). I think this is interesting, because it demonstrates that even though our conversation on this blog is typically local in nature, we are frequently joined by people all across the nation who are interested in what we are talking about here in CenLa. By the way, I can't help but notice the attention we're consistently getting in Washington, D.C., which is a good thing. It should be noted that I do not know WHO is reading this blog (unless they tell me they are). I just know WHERE they are reading it. To all of you out-of-towners, I invite you to leave a comment. I imagine that many of you are expat Central Louisianans. Your suggestions are welcome. Update: This graphic illustrates the growth of CenLamar's readership, beginning in mid-April and extending until about five minutes ago. (I've posted a similar graphic before, but this is obviously more recent). Click to Zoom In.

Saturday, October 28, 2006 by Blogger

New Brewer Campaign Commercial Compares Cleco Case to Pigs at a Trough

  • Depicts Jacques Roy as pig farmer (?) with super-imposed pig snout on his face.
  • Claims EMS will receive 50% of settlement, despite the fact that their contract was amended to reduce this rate while Delores Brewer was Chief of Staff.
  • Depicts Bridgett Brown as brown piglet and the two Baton Rouge attorneys as two white pigs. See also: WeSawThat.
  • If this video does not work, it may be due to your browser. Try using Internet Explorer. I couldn't get it to play on FireFox.
To view the commercial, visit KALB's Video Blog.

Friday, October 27, 2006 by Blogger

User Submitted Photo. Write Your Own Caption.

by Blogger

Jacques Roy on KSYL: Taking Your Questions On the Cleco case, his potential appointments, smart growth. Claims that Brewer camp understands the facts of the Cleco case and that they met at local attorney's home and hatched plan to "confuse voters." Roy claims to have a copy of this plan. One of the highlights occured in the beginning of the interview. ATTENTION: Listen to what happens when you hit CNTRL-Shift-S while the interview is running. It's endless entertainment for the entire family.

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

  • Katherine Harris's Senatorial Campaign Voted Worst Campaign in America... By Republicans! Source: The Buzz.
  • Jim Webb, Candidate for Senate, Authored Weird Gay Incest Story, Claims He Watched Scene Unfold In Bangkok. Source: Wonkette.
  • Happy Craig Nall Day Everybody!
  • NBC Bans Dixie Chick Commercials Because "They're Disparaging to President Bush." Watch the Commercial Here.
  • Remember: Papa Grows Funk, Tonight, 10PM, Spirits.
  • Rush Limbaugh Physically Mocks Parkinsons... Then Apologizes... Michael J. Fox Responds... And He Didn't Even Mention Limbaugh's Penchant for Viagra and Oxycontin.

Thursday, October 26, 2006 by Blogger

Delores Brewer on KSYL: Taking Your Questions. Claims Rick Ranson would be Chief of Staff, Jacques Roy err... Jock Scott would be City Attorney. She also says, once again, that if elected, she won't be in City Hall much. Jacques Roy will be on KSYL tomorrow morning.

by Blogger

Tomorrow Night: Papa Grows Funk in Alexandria World-famous New Orleans funk band, Papa Grows Funk, will be playing in Alexandria for the first time tomorrow night at Spirits. $10 a ticket, 10 PM, Spirits. And this time, Lee's moving all the tables and chairs out. A pithy review from the Onion AV Club: An elemental purist act with lineage to burn, Papa Grows Funk is a New Orleans bar band that retraces Bourbon Street for the highway-bound jam circuit. Headed by Funky Meters drummer Russell Batiste, Jr., Wild Magnolias guitarist June Yamagishi, (former) Galactic saxophonist Jason Mingledorff and Hammond organ ace John Gros, the group gives funk a gritty once-over on 2001’s Doin’ It, which seems to have been a big hit in Japan. Bank on big grooves and crowd dancing a little looser than it should be. Visit Spirits Online.

by Blogger

News Update: Former President George H. W. Bush Rewarded Doctorate of Humanities at Louisiana College, Padding Bush's Resume With Yet Another Fake Degree. From the Town Talk:

During the chapel service, which featured rousing music by the Centennial Choir and Brass, Bush was presented with an honorary doctorate of humanities by Louisiana College.
Do I have to be the first person to point out the obvious? Louisiana College does not have ANY doctorate programs. I know, I know, honorary degrees are inherently ceremonial, but I couldn't help myself.

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

  • Mark Foley Checked Into Ritzy Arizona Rehab Facility. Source: ABC News.com.
  • Related: Human Rights Group Fires Publisher of Foley E-mails. Source: New York Times.
  • His Royal Highness George Herbert Walker Bush Graces Central Louisiana With Auspicious $100,000 Speech Memorializing ...Err... Commemorating Louisiana College. Guests Pay $750 a Piece to Digest Food in Bush's Presence.
  • WeSawThat: Cenla Antics and Cenla GoPAC (Republican Political Action Committee) Linked at the Hip (and on the Internet).
  • Louisiana Political Blogosphere Exploding.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006 by Blogger

A Tribute to Dr. Sleiman Salibi
The Lake Charles man who lost his life last weekend in a plane crash in Grant Parish. This was written into the blog today by Jim McClain:
We lost a friend this weekend. A friend with a zest for life, a sense of adventurism, who possessed remarkable compassion. He loved to fly in airshows. To bring joy to youth who saw in him what he wouldn't say he was himself- a hero, a man who turned the mechanics of flight into something that everyone could understand and in turn share. He honored warbird history by flying a T-28, and allowed many who had known the plane to see it up close. To sit in the cockpit once more, feel the burden of life and age lift, and to be that young airman pilot candidate again. He was young and a professional in a profession that required as much skill as being a warbird pilot. This weekend he found himself in a situation. Whatever the cause, we know the result. Celebrate his life, his spirit. He's earned his wings. Someday, in the end, we all will. Jim/Banzai

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

  • Congressional Candidate Gloria Hearn: "God Told Me to Run." Video: YouTube.
  • Is the Town Talk Promoting Prostitution? Source: WeSawThat.
  • Junior High Teacher Accused of Sex with Student. Source: KALB.
  • North American Super Corridor Allegedly Planned to Link Mexico City to Vancouver, Canada. Source: Wonkette.
  • Oh, and George H. W. Bush Is In Town Today. Err. Tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006 by Blogger

Audit of City of Alexandria Reveals Nearly $800,000 Improperly Spent In Cost-Sharing Agreements with Subdivision Developers According to an audit published on October 18, 2006, the City of Alexandria improperly spent nearly $800,000 in illegal cost sharing agreements with subdivision developers. The auditor explains:

"We examined 14 cost share ordinances and the related development agreements for the period June 2000 through April 2005 and found the following: 1. The City paid $186,913 to construct two water crossings in violation of City charter requirements or state bid law. 2. The City paid $51,527 for a portion of a residential street and a water line relocation in violation of Article VII, Section 14 of the Louisiana Constitution. 3. The City provided materials or reimbursed developers for construction expenses valued at $555,892 but could not provide proper documentation to support its legal obligation to incur these costs. 4. The City did not record the development agreements with Rapides Parish Clerk of Court within 10 days of entering the agreement as required by state law. 5. None of the 14 adopted cost share ordinances met the public notice requirement."
The audit singled out a handful of projects, including the Coty Drive expansion. From the audit:
"One of the projects was the construction of a bayou crossing over Bayou Robert to align Coty Drive with Bruyninckx Drive. Instead of letting the project for public bid, the City entered into a development agreement for $198,861 with V&V Properties. On October 20, 2004, six days before the City entered into the development agreement, V&V Properties invoiced the City $126,285 for the completed bayou crossing. After reviewing the invoice, the City’s engineering office determined that only $53,633 of the invoice could be supported. Mr. Darrell Williamson, former director of planning, stated he told V&V to stop working after he learned they started the work before the ordinance was passed or the development agreement was signed, which lead to the difficulty in verifying some of the items V&V invoiced. Mr. Williamson eventually approved a $96,115 payment for the bayou crossing. The use of a development agreement in this instance effectively circumvented both the Public Bid Law and the City Charter."
The audit explains that State bid law requires that any project over $100,000 must be let for public bid and that the City Charter requires any project over $7,500 must be let for public bid. It is clear that on numerous occasions, the City's agreements violated both laws. The audit makes specific recommendations on how to remedy the problem:
"The City should review and/or implement new policies and procedures with regard to development agreements to ensure each agreement is for eligible work that can be done under a development agreement and is properly documented. The City should also: (1) comply with the state Public Bid Law when procuring public works projects; (2) comply with the City Charter’s bid requirements when procuring public works projects; (3) ensure each development agreement to be considered by the City Council is properly noticed; (4) file each development agreement with the Rapides Parish Clerk of Court; (5) develop written procedures and requirements for the consideration of development agreements, to include the projects the City will consider cost sharing with the developer. (6) only pay for work that is consistent with the scope of the ordinance and the development agreement; and (7) document the incremental cost of projects to ensure the city is paying the fair value of the improvements. Finally, the City should continue to seek an Attorney General’s opinion as to when the state Public Bid Law applies with regard to development agreements."
To download and read a copy of the full report, click here. Babs Zimmerman filed a report here. And Billy Gunn just filed one here.

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

  • Fascinating: Self-Portraits Chroncile a Descent into Alzheimer's. Source: The New York Times.
  • Neighbors Upset That Group Home Opened On Their Street Without Any Public Meeting or Notice. Online Town Talk.
  • Michael J. Fox Commercial for Claire McCaskill Creates Controversy. Watch it on YouTube.
  • Blanco Appoints Bridgett Brown To Board Overseeing Tobacco Settlement. Source: KALB.
  • Bush No Longer Rhetorically "Staying the Course" In Iraq. Source: CNN.com.

Monday, October 23, 2006 by Blogger

Open Questions to the Rodney Alexander Campaign
I recently saw Congressman Alexander's latest television commercial. You know, the one where everyone's wearing red? Alexander's wife says that he comes home every weekend to be with his family. I guess the viewer is supposed to believe that the more he's with his wife and the less he's in Washington, the better represented we all are in the Fifth District. Earlier today, I heard a report that claimed this Congress has worked fewer days than any Congress in the past fifty years-- only 100 days a year. Personally, I would be more satisfied if Alexander stayed in Washington a few weekends, because although people are more important than politics, those of us in the fifth district aren't paying Alexander to play politics; we're paying him to work for the best interests of our district. Incidentally, who is paying for the Congressman to fly back home every weekend? I have a few more questions. 1. Can you name one piece of legislation authored by Rodney Alexander during the previous Congressional session? 2. Why did Congressman Alexander vote against H.R. 4954? The resolution dealt with enhancing the security of America's ports and was co-sponsored by eighty of Alexander's colleagues. 3. Congress worked around 100 days last year, less than a third of the year. Alexander's wife states that he comes home every weekend from Washington. Are we to conclude that Alexander returns home every weekend while Congress is in session? 4. What does Alexander actually mean when he states "people are more important than politics?" Isn't he supposed to be working FOR THE PEOPLE in Congress? Ultimately, shouldn't he, as our Congressman, be working for the people in Washington, D.C.? After all, that's why we sent him there. 5. Regardless of one's political party, I understand that there are certain limitations facing a first-term Congressman. But can anyone point to a single piece of legislation sponsored or co-sponsored by Rodney Alexander that SPECIFICALLY benefits the citizens of Central Louisiana?

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

Sunday, October 22, 2006 by Blogger

Alexandria Man and Lake Charles Doctor Killed in Two Separate Plane Crashes, Reports Bill Sumrall of the Town Talk and Renee Allen of KALB.
According to a breaking news article that appeared tonight on the Town Talk's website, two separate small plane crashes killed an Alexandria man and a Lake Charles doctor earlier today. Both crashes occured in Grant Parish. Renee Allen also reported the story tonight on KALB-TV. Dr. Sleiman Salibi was killed en route from St. Louis, Missouri to Lake Charles in a two-seater T-28 former military plane. The causes of the crash are not yet known. Chad DeRamus, son of local businessman Jimmie DeRamus, was killed after a small Piper plane also carrying Jimmie, Peggy, and Jenny DeRamus and piloted by Jon Norman crashed in a field near Fairfield Road. For more information, visit www.thetowntalk.com. Or on KALB. It appears that Chad DeRamus was a world-ranked professional pool player.

by Blogger

Ch-ch-ch-changes
Throughout the next few weeks, CenLamar will begin undergoing a series of changes as we transition into a more inclusive Internet destination. Thank you for your patience. As for now, check out the convenient Recent Comments section to keep track of what's being said here on CenLamar.

Friday, October 20, 2006 by Blogger

Brewer Ad Picked Up By New Orleans Times-Picayune Online (Nola.com) Headline: La. politician likens opponent to rapist, expects people to vote for her. (Source: CenLamar. Yes, CenLamar is their source).

Delores Brewer's New Television Commercial

by Blogger

by Blogger

Or Download the Latest Brewer Television Commercial Here You'll need Windows Media Player. Source: The Town Talk

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

  • Bloggers continue to react to Delores Brewer's new television ad. Sources say that commercial will run until October 30th.
  • The Town Talk even has something to say.
  • No fourth trial for John A. Gotti. See: New York Times.
  • Cuban media reporting that George W. Bush is interested in buying 98,000 acres in Paraguay. Who knows?
  • A Look at the Flooding in Vernon Parish. See: KALB.

Thursday, October 19, 2006 by Blogger

A Transcript of Delores Brewer's Newest Television Ad "Several years ago I was attacked and raped in my home by the Garden District rapist. I refused to allow it to destroy my integrity. I helped put the rapist in jail and rebuilt my life. In the first primary, I was also unfairly attacked by my opponent, Jacques Roy, but his untruthful attacks only make me fight harder and stand stronger. Jacques Roy has disrespected our community. I want your vote, but first, our community deserves respect. "

by Blogger

New Cenla Blog: Cenla Education Watch (Or Notes From The Underground) Located at cenlaeduwatch.blogspot.com.
An excerpt from the first and only post:
"In the age of No Child Left Behind, states and local districts are struggling to get up to code. This in turn leads to massive headaches for administrators and teachers as we muck our way through a massive comprehensive curriculum that does little to actually aid our students. Try and try as we must little ground is gained through the maze of incomprehensible codes and piles of paperwork that invariably sit upon our desks. Now is the time to voice our opinions. Our world is changing from the days of yore. Our students are becoming more and more unfocused and trapped in a cycle of ennui. How can we fix this? What do you see as a possible solution? As parents, what role do you take in your child's education?"

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

  • Representative Jerry Weller Also Likes Underage Congressional Pages (Girls, though, girls). See: Wonkette.
  • Dirty Bombing NFL Stadiums Was a Hoax. CNN.
  • Parts of Central Louisiana Declared Disaster Zone (Because of the rain). See: KALB.
  • One more thing about the rain: It's rained more in Cenla during the past three days than it did during Hurricane Rita.
  • The Dow Closes Over 12,000 for the First Time in the History of the Universe.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006 by Blogger

Northside Journal: Brewer Campaign Like a "Senile Relative Who Stayed Too Long at the Party" In a scathing editorial published today, Northside Journal editor Neil Kavanagh blasted Delores Brewer's campaign, labeling her as part of the "old guard" and citing her recent press conference as evidence of her precarious political position. Kavanagh writes, "Last week, in an attempt to get people to notice her campaign, Delores Brewer called a press conference to announce that she is still running for mayor. That alone says volumes about the political shape she is in." Concerning Brewer's allegations about Roy's involvement in the Cleco case, Kavanagh states that Brewer's "position on policy changes with her political fortune." To download a copy of the press release, visit WeSawThat's blog. The Northside Journal is located at www.northsidejournal.com.

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

  • Local attorney and blogger Greg Aymond calls for the arrest and prosecution of nine Cenla public servants allegedly involved in free waterline "scandal." See: CentralLaPolitics Blog
  • Nightlife: The Tim Turner Band, Tonight at Spirits, 8PM (I think).
  • Electrical fire causes classes to be canceled at Bolton High School. See: The Town Talk Online.
  • $5.4 billion bid buys apartment complexes in New York City. See: The New York Times.
  • Judge revokes Ken Lay's conviction. It'll be like nothing ever happened. See: The Washington Post.
  • Libertarian Candidate Brent Sanders releases first campaign commercial online. See: WeSawThat.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006 by Blogger

Senator Rick Santorum and The Lord of the Rings I know I said I'd be back tomorrow afternoon with a post, but this is just too bizarre. From Salon.com: In an interview with the editorial board of the Bucks County Courier Times, embattled Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum has equated the war in Iraq with J.R.R. Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings." According to the paper, Santorum said that the United States has avoided terrorist attacks at home over the past five years because the "Eye of Mordor"has been focused on Iraq instead. "As the hobbits are going up Mount Doom, the Eye of Mordor is being drawn somewhere else," Santorum said. "It's being drawn to Iraq and it's not being drawn to the U.S. You know what? I want to keep it on Iraq. I don't want the Eye to come back here to the United States." We're sure that we wouldn't either, if only we had the slightest idea of what Santorum was saying. The Courier Times translates for those of us who are not so conversant in spooky Tolkienese: The "Eye of Mordor," it seems, was "the tool the evil Lord Sauron used in search of the magical ring that would consolidate his power over Middle-earth." To be fair, Santorum's interview with the editorial board wasn't all about fantasy. Well, at least not the Dungeons and Dragons kind. Santorum said that he disagreed with the notion that the United States is "bogged down" in Iraq. As for talk of a troop withdrawal? Santorum said: "I don't think you ask that question. I know that's the question everybody wants to ask. But I don't think anyone would ask that question in 1944, 'Gee, how long are we going to be in Europe?' We're going to be in Europe until we win."

by Blogger

Technical Difficulties, Car Crashes CenLamar will return to its regularly scheduled programming tomorrow afternoon. My computer finally bit the dust today, and on my way back from purchasing a new computer from Office Max (which probably had about three computers in stock yet about seventeen on display), someone ran into the back of my car (the second time in two months someone has hit my car on Jackson Street, underscoring the need for a turning lane... even if we have to make it three lanes). Which reminds me: Anyone know a good trial lawyer? I've got a headache.

Monday, October 16, 2006 by Blogger

A Line By Line Response: Accusations in the Mayoral Campaign Key: ABS= Anonymous Brewer Supporter LW= Lamar White ABS: Even better. Name anything that Roy has done that is considered volunteer work. What organizations has been affiliated with besides law stuff. What has he ever done for this city besides sue it? LW: This list can be found on the Town Talk's website: Parishioner of Our Lady of Prompt Succor Catholic Church; Board Member of Central Louisiana AIDS Support Services (CLASS); Board member, Louisiana Prevent Child Abuse; Board member, First United Methodist Church Weekly Child Care Ministries; volunteer attorney, Alexandria Police Department for critical shooting cases involving deadly force cases. My Brewer supporting friend, before you hurl accusations his way, why won't you check the facts? Check his record. This is information readily available to the public. With all due respect, if you're so concerned about the types of cases Roy takes, why don't you look into them? Go to the courthouse. Or better yet, ask Mrs. Brewer to show you the cases to which she was referring in her mail-outs. ABS: Why did he enter in this race at the last minute? Why has he stated that he wants to be in Washington in 4 years? The council will run amuck in the year+ time it will take to learn the ropes of the city. The learning curve is tremendous. Ask anyone who has ever worked with the city elected leaders. Why won't you people elect a good person that can do this job? I know why. You would like to see a democrat in office. That is why Roy entered in late. He was the third person that Antoon and his bunch approached to do this job. Roy is smart but he is not calling the shots. Why can't you people see that? The story of Job comes to mind. Why do bad things happen to good people? LW: In my humble opinion, Roy didn't enter the campaign at the last minute; his timing was perfect. Also, Jacques Roy has never stated that he wants to be in Washington in four years. I think your facts are slightly confused. Jacques is running for mayor and has stated, from Day One, that he's focused on the job at hand. In his own words, "Why would I want to put my family through that (a job in DC)?" I also think you have your facts a little confused about Mr. Antoon "approaching" Jacques. Jacques Roy made the decision to run for mayor on his own, and he was not pressured by anyone or any group. Again, I implore you to check your facts. You are overstating and embellishing the decision-making process, preferring to paint this as driven by some fictional Democratic machine. You may be surprised to find out that the individuals who most encouraged Jacques to run for mayor were Republicans. Indeed, Mr. Antoon first found out about Jacques' intention to run for mayor AFTER it had been reported in the press. ABS: Delores has done nothing but give back this city. She has helped so many people. Delores Brewer is a good person and she can do the job better than Jacques Roy. I just wish that you could see what Roy represents. Lamar has said that Delores is a good person on several occasions, but he slams her and calls her a liar in public on this blog. Why do you people get so caught up with political affiliation and not about who is a good person with the right qualifications. I hope that you know what you are doing by trashing a good human being. I really do. Jacques has fooled you all with his smooth talk. The facts have been so twisted that it is impossible to syphin the truth from the cluster. Why does Jacques want to be Mayor? He doesn't. It is the democratic machine that wants him to. LW: When the integrity of someone I know to be a good person is called into question, I will defend that person. When facts are manipulated and spun into political rhetoric, I will do my best to unpack that rhetoric. I believe Mrs. Brewer to be a good person, but I have questioned many of the things she has said and done throughout this campaign. However, I understand her motivation: She wants to be our mayor. My support of Jacques Roy has nothing to do with my opinion of Mrs. Brewer. Perhaps it may be difficult for you to understand this: I support Jacques Roy, as do many other people, because I believe he is the right person for this job. I took the time to learn about all of the candidates, even meeting with a handful of them, before arriving at my decision. The process was interesting to me. During this run-off, it has become increasingly evident to me why Mr. Roy represents our best chance at open and honest government. Last week, Mrs. Brewer staged a press conference in which she completely misrepresented and manipulated the basic facts of the City's ongoing legal battle with Cleco. Personally, I felt that the press conference only served to confuse the facts, and it seemed to be based on the notion that if voters were confused enough, they'd be more likely to vote for Mrs. Brewer. How could anyone trust a mayor who is willing to purposely confuse people about a CRITICAL issue? And again, with all due respect my Brewer supporting compadre, there is absolutely no way to wiggle out of this: The press conference can be viewed on the Town Talk's website, and an audio recording is available on the Northside Journal. The facts are out there for anyone who is interested. Click here to read Delores Brewer's press release.

Saturday, October 14, 2006 by Blogger

Read Me: The Facts About the Cleco Case On June 23, 2005 the Town Talk reported the City had filed suit against Cleco. FACT: When the City Council went into Executive Session on June 21, 2005 to discuss pending litigation with Cleco, Emergency Management Services, LLC sole owner and member was David Pugh. See Louisiana Secretary of State Corporate Database. EMS was founded in April 2004 and had a change in membership in May 2004 leaving Pugh the sole member. FACT: On September 23, 2005, Harold Chambers, Darrell Williamson and Sonny Craig were dismissed from the City. Delores Brewer moved into the position of Chief of Staff soon after. FACT: On March 7, 2006 the City Council authorized the Mayor to sign Amendment 1 to the contract with EMS, lowering their contingency fee (compensation rate) they would recover from the Cleco suit. Delores Brewer was the Chief of Staff then and could have advised the City Council to negate the contract then if it was "illegal." The amount EMS is due to receive is no longer at 50%. FACT: Bridgett Brown is part of the legal team, along with 2 other Alexandria attorneys, who have since left the case, and 2 attorneys from Baton Rouge whose contract states they are to receive 35% of moneys recovered from the suit which will be split 5 ways. Even though the 2 other Alexandria attorneys departed from the contract, the most Bridgett Brown could receive under this agreement is 11.67%. FACT: Sam Sansing, along with David Pugh, were sued by Cleco for breach of confidentiality after they left the employ of Cleco. On October 15, 2005, Sansing countersued Cleco in an act known as reconventional demand. Sansing's attorney of record is Jacques Roy, something Mr. Roy has never disputed. Mr. Roy does not represent EMS, nor does he represent David Pugh, nor is he one of the other two attorneys who would recover any portion of the 35% under the legal agreement with the City of Alexandria. He is representing an individual being sued by a former employer. In order to read the Town Talk's coverage of the Cleco case, you'll need a credit card to access their archives. Or you could just go to the library.

Friday, October 13, 2006 by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

Thursday, October 12, 2006 by Blogger

Brewer at Press Conference: Jacques Roy Should Donate Earnings from Cleco Case Earlier today, Delores Brewer's campaign contacted members of the media, announcing a press conference at 2:30PM. Apparently, the conference was only open to members of the press and committed Brewer supporters. At least one Jacques Roy supporter was asked to leave after refusing to wear a Brewer sticker on her lapel. Watch the Entire Press Conference. Courtesy: The Town Talk. Here's an audio recording. Courtesy: Northside Journal. Brewer used the opportunity to lambast Roy, implying that Roy's work on the Cleco case could represent an ethical conflict and demanding that Roy pledge to donate his earnings to the City of Alexandria. I am currently awaiting a response from the Roy campaign, but on a personal note, please allow me to editorialize:

  1. Mrs. Brewer pledged to avoid negative campaigning during the run-off. After learning of her second place finish, Mrs. Brewer told the citizens of Alexandria, live on KALB-TV, that she would not engage in negative campaigning during the run-off. Click here to watch Mrs. Brewer's statement on KALB.
  2. Jacques Roy represents Sam Sansing as his defense attorney in a case against Sansing's former employer, Cleco. Bridgett Brown and two other lawyers from Baton Rouge represent the City of Alexandria in a suit against Cleco. The two cases are all part of the same narrative, but they each concern two entirely different things. Jacques Roy does not represent the City of Alexandria or EMS, the consulting company owned by David Pugh, and therefore, he does not stand to financially benefit from any rateholder refunds.
WeSawThat: Delores Brewer "Breaks Campaign Promise." KALB Video Blog: Brewer Event Was a "Political Stunt." Permalink: Delores Brewer Pledging to Remain "Positive" on KALB

by Blogger

Delores Brewer to Make Announcement Today at 2:30PM at Brewer HQ on Jackson Street

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

Wednesday, October 11, 2006 by Blogger

This Week in Crime:

  • Two people shot while driving by the Sonic fast food restaurant on Lee Street.
  • One person arrested for this crime.
  • One murder on 13th and Ashley Avenue.
  • Two teenagers arrested for this crime.
  • Carjacking suspect arrested.
  • A few aggravated battery arrests.
  • Anything else to add?

by Blogger

The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

Tuesday, October 10, 2006 by Blogger

Breaking: Francis Heitmeier Drops Out of LA Secretary of State Race, Jay Dardenne Becomes Secretary of State-Elect. From the Gannett article:

Heitmeier said after a close examination of the Sept. 30 primary results, it was apparent that turnout would not be much better in the Nov. 7 runoff election “and that it would take a large revenue stream to mount a major get out the vote effort.”
Read more on The Daily Advertiser.

by Blogger

A New Feature! The Daily Update: What You Can't Read in the Newspaper

Monday, October 09, 2006 by Blogger

Socialism Inaction Yesterday, for the first time in my life, I was labeled as a socialist. I suppose this is because I believe in the efficacy of certain private/public partnerships to create opportunities for a community. A blogger who calls himself liberty or death gave a localized explanation on Cenla Antics:

Water slides, Bentleys, Condo's, half million dollar buses, walking trails, landscaping architects fees, legal fees for studies blah, blah, blah are definitely examples of socialism in action. All of these schemes to take your money you produced for you and your family and spread it around to cronies who leach off the working person are the socialistic activities right here in River City. It exists and only an intellectually dishonest man or a fool does not see it. Will he disavow the status quo and move toward the laissez-faire capitalistic concept of having the free market provide the economic boon that will follow a change from force, fraud and gov't to freedom and a vibrant economy. Address this issue in detail so we can see exactly what you perceive is in the best interest of Alex and its citizens (taxpayers).
There's a good point somewhere in there: Phony projects that do not serve the common good are a misuse of our taxdollars and an abuse of authority. But, let's take a close look at the projects he's talking about: 1. The idea for a waterslide first came to our community's attention after the City of Alexandria paid a consulting company $100,000 to study affordable housing in South Alexandria. For some reason, the study on housing turned into a study on building a waterpark. We wrote the check, but the consulting company has yet to provide a single "deliverable." In short, we were ripped off. (And it never was a good idea to begin with). 2. The Hotel Bentley: The nuclear option first discussed by Dr. John Sams was neither feasible nor practical. Thankfully, it's now a moot issue. There is very little the COA can do to assist new ownership (perhaps a tax abatement), but I would hope that the City do all that it can to ensure the viability of the Bentley. Why? Because it's one of our community's best assets. If you believe in free market capitalism, then perhaps you should consider the notion, espoused by many, that our municipal government is like a $150 million a year business. We're competing against other cities for the same tourists, conventions, and jobs. The Hotel Bentley already has a physical connection to our Riverfront Convention Center, and its closure creates practical problems for large conventions. However, there are already state and federal incentive programs (like Bush's renewal community incentives) that new Bentley ownership could utilize without dipping into local taxdollars in order to reduce its risks. 3. Walking trails are simply a component of a larger plan for revitalizing blighted neighborhoods. Unfortunately, despite spending hundreds of thousands of taxdollars on a master plan for the COA, we're still left without a real course of action. Projects are haphazardly planned and completed. There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason, no coherent vision. 4. Downtown condos: Developers would be more reliant on state and federal incentives in accomplishing this. Bush's renewal community zone incentives allow developers to reduce their risks by writing off a certain portion of their renovation costs. Other than that, we should not expect local taxpayers to underwrite a private real estate development. 5. Landscape architects fees: First, I don't know about you, but I like the idea of community beautification. Perhaps we've been spending too much on landscaping, and if we have, we need to find a new service. 6. Legal Fees: Couldn't agree more. We spend too much money contracting legal services. I think the central question here is this: Will our next mayor allow government to be run as a personal piggybank for his friends and family (under the guise of economic development)? Will our next mayor stand up and challenge the consulting contracts, the backdoor deals, and the misappropriation of funds? Once the next mayor is sworn is, what is his or her first step?

Saturday, October 07, 2006 by Blogger

Press Release from Congressional Candidate Brent Sanders (This guy's name has already been mentioned a few times here and on Cenla Antics. I received this press release this morning).

For Immediate Release October 8, 2006 Congressional Candidate Brent Sanders Responds to Page-Gate: "A Conspiracy of Silence." Earlier today, District Five Congressional Candidate Brent Sanders responded to the ongoing investigation of Congressman Mark Foley (R- FL) regarding his inappropriate contact and vulgar comments to young male Congressional pages. "Representative Foley abused his position of authority. These young boys went to Washington, D.C. to work for their role models and mentors. Instead, they were betrayed by the very people that write the laws to protect them." Sanders contends that Foley is not the only culpable party. "Silence is an accomplice to abuse," he said. "Our laws mandate that certain individuals are required to report any suspicion of abuse or neglect. These laws include any person who provides training and supervision of a child." Sanders further stated, "Where is the accountability? These Congressmen had not only a moral obligation, but possibly a legal requirement to report these offenses. Instead of reporting to the proper authorities, who have trained investigators, their first action was political damage control. That is reprehensible." Although Sanders did not single out his opponent, Rodney Alexander, he believes it is still necessary to investigate the chain of communication that took place between Alexander's office and other members of Congress, including Representative Tom Reynolds, head of the NRCC. "They both have questions to answer." Sanders stated that, if elected, he would not play politics to protect his party. "Honest government should uphold the laws of our land. Our campaign is about holding big government accountable for the decisions they make with our tax dollars. To serve the greater good, we must be able to look beyond party politics. I commit to serve based upon the needs of the 5th Congressional District rather than the needs of any political party. This is unfortunately exactly what we have to deal with for the last two years by the Incumbent." Media Requests: Contact brentsanders@hotmail.com 318-448-3123

Thursday, October 05, 2006 by Blogger

What's Happening This Weekend Friday: The Artwalk Downtown Alexandria (See Map In Another Post) 5PM-8PM Art Walk Participants: Activities: Xavier Cathedral Hall- Liturgical books and a Display of Impressionist Canvases. Emmanuel Baptist Church- Gallery Exhibit Finnegan’s Wake Pub- Outside Bar and Art Exhibit Alex 1805 - Specialty Drink, Sidewalk Art Display Diamond Grill- Boxed Dinner and Wine, Sidewalk, Chalk Drawing for Kids. Sentry Grill- Book Signing, Gift Merchandise Sales, and Grill Specials. Egoli Internet Café - Poetry Reading and Movie Clips The Kress Theater- Lobby Anne Reid Exhibit The Louisiana History Museum- 1804 Copy of New York Herald Announcing the LA Purchase Rapides Parish Library- Children’s Arts and Crafts with Book Character “Biscuit” Coughlin-Sanders Performing Art Center- Contemporary Artists Guild Exhibit Arna Bontemps African American Museum- Permanent Exhibit T.R.E.E. House Children’s Museum Crafts for Children and Cookies and Punch. River Oaks Square Art Center- (3) Exhibit Openings and Iron Pour Demonstrations from 5-8pm Alexander Fulton Mini Park Downtown Rocks (Live Outdoor City of Alexandria Concert on the Steps of City Hall) 6- 8pm Featuring Harmon Drew Super Group. Alexandria Museum of Art- Introduction of New Art Pieces After the Art Walk... Guy Forsyth: Austin Musician Playing Live at Spirits, Friday Night, tickets at the door. Read more about Guy's music on his website. And that's him on the right balancing the guitar. Saturday Night: Border Patrol: Frosty Factory, $5 at the door, 10PM Read more about Border Patrol by clicking here.

by Blogger

Reynolds Holds Press Conference on Page Gate Here's the strategy: Reynolds surrounded himself with small children so the media wouldn't be able to ask direct questions regarding the ongoing investigation of Mark Foley, the disgraced Congressman whose actions went unreported by several top Republican lawmakers. "What do you mean 'who are these children?' I'm friends with a lot of thirtysomethings and they just HAPPENED to show up with their small children. I can't see what the big deal is."

by Blogger

Police Chiefs Continue to Be Arrested in Rapid Succession The AP is reporting that Ville Platte Police Chief Louis Dale Marcantel has been arrested and charged with molestation of a teenage family member. The alleged molestation occured more than ten years ago, and the woman has only recently come forward. Marcantel denies these charges. Marcantel is the sixth Louisiana police chief (or assistant police chief) arrested during the past eleven months. Here's the breakdown (Source: The Town Talk):

  • Jena’s police chief, George King, is free on $20,000 bond after being arrested Oct. 3 on a perjury charge. He is accused of lying in a drug case.
  • Gregg McKinney resigned as Delhi’s police chief on Sept. 20, after pleading guilty to setting fire to his own office and two other felonies. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison, the maximum possible under his plea bargain.
  • St. Gabriel’s former assistant chief, Lawrence B. Williams Jr., pleaded guilty in May to a federal charge of using his teenage son’s Social Security number to apply for a car loan.
  • Former Opelousas Police Chief Larry Caillier pleaded guilty in May to a federal fraud charge stemming from the misuse of money intended to provide extra patrols for high-crime areas.
  • Lutcher’s former chief, Corey Pittman, pleaded guilty in December to drug charges. He had been caught on videotape selling crack cocaine to an undercover agent.
  • Read more on the Town Talk.

    Wednesday, October 04, 2006 by Blogger

    Downtown Alexandria Art Walk: This Friday.

    by Blogger

    Rodney Alexander: Our Congressman On November 7, we'll also decide whether or not Rodney Alexander, the Republicrat from Quitman, should be reelected. Rodney's been in the news a lot lately. First, there was the bizarre story about how he fired a secretary for sending love letters to convicted murderer and media darling Scott Peterson. (There are a number of questions here: Why would Alexander go public with a personnel decision? Did he fire this woman and then call up the media? "Boy, have I got a story for you!"). And now, Rodney's back in the news again. It seems that one of his Congressional pages, a sixteen-year-old kid from Monroe, got creeped out when Congressman Mark Foley began sending him suggestive e-mails. Foley initially said he was concerned about the kid after Hurricane Katrina. (Because, as you know, Monroe is located right on the Gulf Coast). But once the story broke, other interns started talking about their encounters with the Florida Republican, providing additional e-mails and instant message transcripts so dirty that even ABC wouldn't publish them. Alexander was told about the e-mails. (Hey, Rodney, one of your colleagues is probably harassing young male Congressional pages!). Now, I ask, what would you do if you knew that a colleague was sending inappropriate e-mails to sixteen-year-old boys? It appears that Mr. Alexander, who switched over the the GOP after milking the Louisiana Democratic Party, understood the political implications of such a scandal, and instead of waving the red flag, he called up his buddy, Representative Tom Reynolds, head of the National Republican Congressional Committee, an organization committed to electing Republicans. (Incidentally, Kirk Fordham, Reynold's Chief of Staff, just resigned about two hours ago. Why do you think he felt pressured to resign?). Congressman Alexander's excuses are interesting-- the boy's family didn't want to press charges, so he didn't think it was a big deal. Yet, it was a big enough deal to call up the NRCC and alert them. So let me get this straight: You find out your secretary has been sending love letters to Scott Peterson, and your first inclination is to contact the media. But when your former page, an underage boy, tells you about the creepy e-mails he received from a Congressman, you contact the NRCC (I believe this is called "damage control"). Something doesn't add up here, and already, members of Congress are calling for Alexander's resignation. On a Related Note: Foley's Follies Way back on September 12, 1998, Kenneth Starr, whose investigation into President Clinton's Whitewater real estate dealings somehow turned into a story about an intern, published a work of erotic non-fiction known as The Starr Report. Members of Congress were disgusted and disturbed. One of those who seemed most disturbed was Florida Republican Mark Foley, who offered this now ironic analysis to the St. Petersburg Times. Quoting from the article:

    "It's vile," said Rep. Mark Foley, R-West Palm Beach. "It's more sad than anything else, to see someone with such potential throw it all down the drain because of a sexual addiction."
    Source: MGB blog, St. Peterburg Times

    Tuesday, October 03, 2006 by Blogger

    A Special Kudos to Roosevelt Johnson The result are now official, and Roosevelt Johnson missed the run-off by a mere seventeen votes. As a community, we should all be proud of the campaign waged by Mr. Johnson. When asked about his greatest campaign contributors at a mayoral forum, Mr. Johnson replied simply, "My shoes." And he wasn't being coy. Throughout the past two months, Mr. Johnson made it his mission to knock on the door of every single home in Alexandria. I'm not sure if he succeeded, but he definitely came close. I think it's commendable. It's a testament to how much Mr. Johnson cares about our city and its people.

    Sunday, October 01, 2006 by Blogger

    Precinct by Precinct Analysis of the Mayoral Election Although the results won't be made official until Tuesday, the Louisiana Secretary of State is still offering an unofficial precinct by precinct breakdown of the Alexandria mayoral election, and its results are interesting. * Jacques Roy won the early or absentee voting by a significant margin, 42%, particularly when one considers the fact that he faced six other candidates. * Roosevelt Johnson won the most votes in eighteen (18) of the forty-one (41) precincts, primarily precincts in South and Southeast Alexandria. Several of the precincts won by Mr. Johnson recorded exceptionally low turnout. * One precinct recorded zero votes. * Joe Fuller won the most votes in three precincts, one of which he won by garnering a total of three (3) votes. * Interestingly, Delores Brewer, who has unofficially placed in second, won the most votes in only two precincts, one of which she won by collecting a total of only 13 (thirteen) votes and the other of which, C18, votes at Bolton High School. * Jacques Roy won the most votes in seventeen (17) of the forty-one (41) precincts, including both precincts at Alexandria Senior High, both precincts at Nachman Elementary, and both precincts at Cherokee Elementary. * Jacques Roy garnered more votes than Delores Brewer in thirty-four (34) out of forty-one (41) precincts, and of those in which Brewer edged out Roy, the margin of victory was, for the most part, in the single digits. * Precinct by precinct analysis indicates that Jacques Roy received a significant number of crossover votes. That is, he garnered strong second and third place finishes in a number of precincts in which Mr. Johnson and Mr. Fuller finished in first or second place. * It appears that white voter turnout far surpassed African-American voter turnout. It should be noted that in some of the precincts claimed by Mr. Johnson, the total votes collected were only in the double digits. However, Mr. Johnson also appears to have garnered a number of crossover votes as well, placing a strong second or third place in many of the precincts captured by Jacques Roy. * The precinct with the most turnout appears to be C36, which I believe is Charles Park, with a total of 921 votes. (Correct me if I am wrong). How to Interpret the Data: As a disclaimer, I do not claim to be a political scientist, though I have studied the discourse, and as was reported on KALB (thanks for the plug, guys), I am a strong supporter of Jacques Roy. The data illustrates a number of interesting trends. First, it indicates the growth of Alexandria, spreading South and Southwest. Those precincts recorded the most number of votes. It also shows that in precincts in which the majority of voters are white, Mrs. Brewer garnered enough votes to put her (unofficially) in second place, as she finished a strong second to Jacques Roy in most of those precincts. However, it also shows the crossover appeal of Mr. Roy. He was able to capture votes in every active precinct (note: again, one precinct, C22, recorded no votes for all seven candidates. That is, an entire precinct didn't even vote). Mrs. Brewer received zero votes in two precincts, excluding C22. Additionally Mr. Roy received votes in the double digits in nearly every precinct located in majority African-American neighborhoods, while Mrs. Brewer's votes were capped in the single digits. What does this mean? You decide. Click here.

    by Blogger

    Facebook and LC Detractors For those of you who don't know, Facebook (located at www.facebook.com) is a member's-only social networking site created by Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg about two years ago. Initially, the only people allowed to join facebook were those with college e-mail addresses, but recently, facebook has opened up to high school students and a select number of corporations. Soon, members will be able to join based on their geographical location. Facebook also allows individuals to create groups based on a common interest. For instance, there is a Jacques Roy for Mayor facebook group with 38 members spread across the state. Anyway, today, I discovered two facebook groups: the "I Miss the Old LC" group and the "Future Rich Alumni Who Aren't Giving This School a Dime" group. The groups are composed of current and former students. "I Miss the Old LC" currently has 61 members and the "Future Rich Alumni..." group has 37 members, and their message boards contain some interesting commentary, including one that claims the administration has its eye on the criticism leveled by current seniors. Here's the description of the "Future Rich Alumni..." group:

    They want to censor student-run websites? Well, I'm going to censor my six figure income. This is a group of people they shouldn't piss off if they want any alumni funding in the coming years (and their friends that are going to be teachers, ministers, etc. who wouldn't give LC if they were making big money.)
    And here's the description of the "I Miss the Old LC" group:
    Members of this group remember the days of academic greatness; the presidency of Rory Lee; the leadership of Lori Thames; the lectures of Thomas Howell, Carlton Winbery, Bill Simpson, and others; and above all, the lack of theological litmus tests.
    Yesterday, an alumn wrote the following post on the "I Miss the Old LC" message board (and I found it interesting, because of all the things that have ever been written about LC on this blog, no one has ever made this point):
    Okay, you young folks never saw the old LC. The 1998-1999 year (pre-football) was probably the last year that you could still call it the "old" LC. Anyone who was there would know what I'm talking about... a time when both feet DIDN'T have to be on the floor during open house. Rattle off all the names you want, but unless names like "Jackie Barton" ring a bell, you don't know the "old" LC. LC started its journey down the tubes long before the Aguillard brothers arrived. If you look at the US News reports, LC was on its way down even during the early years of Rory Lee's presidency. Not that I agree with what's going on now, but this LC you are describing is not the "old" LC. It was an LC in transition to becoming the laughing stock that it is now.
    I decided to write about these groups because I think it's important to acknowledge that while there are many supporters of the changes enacted at LC, there's an also organizational effort behind the dissent (and this effort, at least in its online form, is primarly composed recent alumni). Links (Note: You must be a member of Facebook to review this content): I Miss the Old LC Future Rich Alumns Who Aren't Giving a Dime to This School

    by Blogger

    Roy Wins 33% of the Vote, Faces Brewer in Run-Off. Silver Defeats Lampert, Hobbs Defeats Hickman, Lawson Defeats Slatkin Please allow me, just once, to be a little hyperbolic. Yesterday represented a great turning point in the history of Alexandria when over one-third of all voters cast their vote for candidate Jacques Roy, according to unofficial results. The difference between second and third place was a scant seventeen votes, narrowly placing Delores Brewer ahead of Roosevelt Johnson as the final precincts were counted. During the next month, we should continue to talk about the issues, and we should encourage an inclusive conversation that brings everyone to the table. On a personal note: A special kudos to all of the people who have encouraged and emboldened me to express my opinions and an even greater thank you to everyone who has used this blog to stand up for what they believe in, to call people into action, and to hold others accountable. The Internet represents a powerful new median, and in Alexandria, we're just now beginning to understand its potential. Also, to the students, faculty, and alumni of Bolton High School, particularly those of you who have contributed to this blog, two very positive things happened last week that could change your school forever: Our school system is no longer under the desegregation order, and Mrs. Pam Webb was elected to serve your district as a School Board member. Seize the opportunity. Round One is over. But we're not finished yet.