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23.6.22

Gas tax holiday ultimately makes LA worse off

It’s even possible that Louisiana and its residents might in the short-term benefit from a three-month gas tax holiday as proposed by Democrat Pres. Joe Biden and supported by the state’s only congressman from that party, but they surely lose big in the long run.

Biden has asked Congress to knock off the 18.4 cent per gallon federal excise tax temporarily as a means to quell surging gas prices. Nationally, they have about doubled since last spring, and in Louisiana as of this writing average about $4.50 a gallon for regular-grade fuel.

This could make for some good political optics, emanating the appearance of lowered prices at the pump, even as in reality it will do little to alter prices except immediately and briefly . Likely, a substitution effect will occur where demand increases because of the lower price, while supply will not have changed, so prices will rise to compensate. As well, “savings” only incompletely would be passed along the supply chain and the move negates Biden Administration policy fixated on preventing the myth of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming from fruition by increasing the amount of carbon burned into to atmosphere.

22.6.22

Edwards veto zeal invites overrides, power loss

Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards, like last year, has thrown down the gauntlet. But this time, it might get thrown back at him, and then some.

A few days ago, Edwards released his latest round of vetoes for bills from the recently-concluded regular session of the Legislature. That brought the total to 23 – all but one by Republicans with the remaining one innocuous in nature but done against no party state Rep. Roy Daryl Adams as payback for voting to override the Edwards veto of the state’s reapportioned congressional districts – meaning that before the deadline for veto issuance that comes by the end of the month, the number may surpass last year’s 31.

The past two years have ticked higher in number because Edwards lost much control over the Legislature after 2019 elections and the increasing ideological drift to the left his policy-making has exhibited since after that election he could no longer run for reelection. 2020 didn’t feature much discord because practical issues surrounding combatting the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic dominated proceedings, but since then the Republican majorities in each chamber haven’t been shy about legislating their preferences, with the occasional help of dissenting Democrats or no party/independent members, that stand inimically opposed to his.

21.6.22

Edwards shows use of faith as political stunt

In case any doubts lingered, in his latest announcements about disposition of 2022 Regular session bills Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards officially confirmed, when it comes to matters of public policy, his status as a “cafeteria Catholic” who puts political expediency ahead of giving witness to actual faith.

That term refers to someone who calls himself Catholic yet picks and chooses which parts of his faith to which to adhere. It’s widely considered that it’s tough for a practicing Catholic not to act this way; for example, despite the Church’s teaching that any contraceptive method not natural (except in extraordinary circumstances) violates God’s law, one poll a few years back revealed only 8 percent of people who identified as Catholics deemed artificial birth control as morally objectionable.

It's not for anybody to cast scarlet letters on others to castigate them on their supposed infidelities to their religious beliefs; that’s reserved to God and His mercy to offenders is endless in any event. People have enough trouble looking out for their own souls and, beyond bearing witness to their faith as best they can, have no time left over to intrude uninvited into others’ lives over such matters.

20.6.22

Bogus claim fueled unwise teacher pay hike

The argument used to justify granting pay raises for Louisiana teachers as well as making it easier for some retired teachers to double-dip, a shortage, statistics shows is at best specious.

The just-concluded regular session of the Louisiana Legislature featured a number of bills to combat the presumed shortage. Principally, a $1,500 average pay raise went to educators in the public schools, and a new law allows rehiring of former teachers where there exists a “critical shortage,” with some able to keep their entire pensions paying out during their temporary contracts.

Lawmaker after lawmaker emphasized these items addressed a situation where too few teachers chased too many students, requiring too many substitutes or teaching not in areas of certification. Some, along with Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards, wanted $500 more thrown in, all to ameliorate the presumed shortage.

19.6.22

RINO Bernard opts out, ushers in Seabaugh

What could have set up as the most controversial state Senate race for 2023 essentially ended earlier this week with evaporation of any drama from the almost-simultaneous announcements of the coming retirement of Republican state Sen. Louie Bernard and candidacy of GOP state Rep. Alan Seabaugh.

Reapportionment threw the term-limited Seabaugh into what will become District 31, which will extend over 10 parishes but mainly takes in populations in small portions of southern Caddo and Bossier Parishes, all of Sabine Parish, and most of Natchitoches Parish. Only the last at present is in the district, which will lose its foothold in much of Rapides Parish, with parts of De Soto, Webster and Bienville added as well to shift the locus of the district north.

This put Bernard on thin electoral ice with the campaign-experienced Seabaugh looking to extend his legislative career in a district whose northern portion with a plurality of voters already has great familiarity with him and his political allies. Within the past couple of years not only did he win reelection comfortably but also allies of his won offices as varied as judicial, Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, and in Bossier City.