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Blaming John Bel Edwards for Moody's Louisiana downgrade is a laugher
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laughingby Tom Aswell, Publisher of Louisiana Voice

Ph.D., it seems really does stand for “piled higher and deeper” in some quarters.

And Jeff Sadow, Ph.D., proves it in spades.

After all, no self-respecting snake oil salesman would attempt to sell what Sadow was hawking in Sunday’s Baton Rouge Advocate.

Normally, we don’t take issue with other bloggers in this space because it is our firm conviction that everyone has the right to his own opinion.

But no one has the right to his own facts and that’s where Sadow has crossed the line with his latest attempt at political erudition of the masses—or at least that part of Louisiana’s masses who subscribe to The Advocate. (And no, that’s not a dig at The Advocate. The fact is, each major metropolitan area of the state has its own newspaper to the general exclusion of all the others, so that necessarily limits the sphere of influence of any given publication.)

There’s an old joke that says 87.3 percent of all statistics are made up on the spot and unfortunately, the Baton Rouge Advocate has provided him a forum to toss out any figures he can conjure up and feed them to us as facts.

Southeastern Louisiana University associate professor of political science Kurt Corbello recently took him to task in a LouisianaVoice guest column, exposing his LSU-Shreveport counterpart as more than a little off base with his data.

Sadow had published the absurd claim that Louisiana ranked “well above the national average in per capita spending when in fact, the state spent $6,365 per capita in spending, $352 below the state average nationwide.

“The only way to arrive at the columnist’s (Sadow’s) conclusion that Louisiana ranks “well above the national average in per capita spending” is to make it all up, Corbello wrote.

Only a week later, Sadow has gone completely off the reservation by blaming the recent Moody’s downgrade of the state’s credit rating on John Bel Edwards who has been governor less than two months.

Jindal systematically wrecked the state’s economy for a full eight years. And Moody’s and Standard & Poor each put the state on its critical watch list last year. Where the hell was Sadow with his self-righteous indignation during those years?

Remember, Jeff, Louisiana had a Republican governor and Republican majorities (big majorities, we might add) in both the House and Senate during those eight years. Remember also, Jeff, Jindal & Co. managed to incur budgetary shortfalls every single year he was in office even as he kept up the drumbeat to “do more with less.” He cut higher education more than any other state in the nation.

He cut services to the developmentally disadvantaged (but he managed to give $4.7 million of their money to one of the richest families in Louisiana for their Indy racetrack in Avondale. That family, the Chouest family, we should add, was a generous donor to the Jindal campaigns, pour in more than $130,000 to his state campaigns and a cool $1 million to his Believe Again super PAC.

He gutted funding for the Department of Children and Family Services to such an extent that the agency cannot even repair its state vehicles and the overworked staff finds it impossible to properly work its caseloads to protect the state’s foster children.

He did make sure that nursing homes received adequate per bed funding but when you peel back the layers, you see that the industry contributed generously to his campaigns.

A recipient of megabucks from the oil and gas industry, he made sure to kill the lawsuit against 97 oil and gas and pipeline companies for destroying the state’s marshlands.

He vetoed bills passed unanimously in both the House and Senate to ensure transparency in public records, including those of the governor’s office.

He likewise vetoed unanimous legislation that would have made the Louisiana Department of Economic Development justify those billions of dollars of tax breaks, exemption, credits and incentives awarded to businesses and industries who in turn, created only minimum wage, or worse, no new jobs.

Yes, the oil patch dried up virtually with no warning—much like it did in the early 1980s, creating an additional strain on the state budget.

And yet, Jeff, you see all this as the fault of one John Bel Edwards, governor of the State of Louisiana for a full two months?

And you place none of the fault with Jindal? Or the legislature?

Jeff, you’re an educated man, with a Ph.D. on your wall to prove it.

Well, Jeff, I have a degree, too. I have a B.S. degree from Louisiana Tech. You probably graduated with honors while I graduated Magna Cum Barely. But Jeff, I live out here in the real world. I get out and talk to people. You obviously do neither.

If you can convince anyone that Edwards, with two months under his belt, is responsible for all of Louisiana’s ills after eight years of Jindal’s reign of error, then you have truly missed your calling.

You should have been a stage hypnotist or better yet, a televangelist. If you can sell what you’re peddling, you could make a linebacker cluck like a chicken or a heathen throw away his crutches.


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