Even though there are six weeks left in his term as Mayor of New Orleans, Mitch Landrieu has already set his sights on a bigger prize: the White House.
With the launch of his book, “In the Shadows of Statues: A White Southerner Confronts History,” Landrieu has been all over the national media. In recent days, he has been interviewed on the CBS Morning Show, the National Geographic Channel, 60 Minutes, This Week, The Daily Show, andMeet the Press, to name only a few. This Friday, he will be a guest on HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher.
How did a man, not born of wealth, somehow, start out as a car salesman, then a dealer and then a banker and then an owner of major sports franchises, do it? I mean, how did Tom Benson, who passed away yesterday at age 90, who owned the New Orleans Saints and the New Orleans Pelicans, emerge as a billionaire, philanthropist and one of the most important men in Louisiana history?
Let’s face it. The owner of the New Orleans NFL football team and NBA basketball team, Tom Benson, was indeed, a Saint.
And now, he moves on to his next winning season and the state of Louisiana mourns.
Late winter and early spring is one of the best times of the year in the New Orleans region. The Chambers and Greater New Orleans Inc hold major events. The French Quarter festival announces its schedule for those waiting to take in the sun, the food and the music. The Big Idea and Entrepreneurship Week is upon us once again from our friends from Idea Village.
Was that a political endorsement for Mitch Landrieu for the position of President of the United States we heard last night coming out of the mouth of MSNBC’s Hardball’s Chris Matthews?
Well, let me explain. First, a little history.
For the second year in a row, Louisiana has ranked last in the U.S. News and World Report state ranking. It is a poor ranking that is very well deserved.
The study focused on 77 different areas in eight major categories, such as crime. Unfortunately, in this area, Louisiana does not compare very favorably. Our state is a very violent one with the highest incarceration rate in the nation. Last year, a criminal justice reform package was signed by Governor John Bel Edwards. The ostensible reason for the legislation was to reduce the incarceration rate. Thus, 1900 “non-violent” offenders were released in November of 2017. Not surprisingly in the span of a few weeks, 76 of these prisoners were arrested again. Their victims would not have been targeted if these criminals were kept in prison.
For years, Arnie Fielkow was pitching New Orleans Saints to the State of Louisiana as its Executive Vice President. After Katrina, as the City Councilman, then the Council President, he was helping the city rebuild from disaster that devastated the lives of so many and the infrastructure that made New Orleans so special. In recent years, Fielkow, who is far from being short, lived among the real redwoods of the sporting world, running the very respected National Basketball Retired Players Association, leaving the city for Chicago.
Cirque du Soleil is returning to New Orleans this month to launch Corteo, its latest North American touring production. The Quebec-based entertainment company has made Louisiana a major hub for pre-production and launch of its North American tours in recent years.
In the current competition to land a new Amazon second North American headquarters, Louisiana pulled out all stops. It would have been quite a coup for a Louisiana location to land this big prize with some 50,000 new jobs to the winner. But from the beginning, the Bayou State never had a chance.
Are we seeing some trickle down Trump now with New Orleans's incoming Mayor, LaToya Cantrell?
Many of us have long stated that the President of the United States sets the agenda in government and ethics. When Donald Trump refused to show his income taxes destroying a tradition set by modern presidential candidates, it opened the door for others in state and local government to refuse to share financial information unbound by law to disclose.