Oh No You Didn't

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Barbara Bush, New Orleans and Hurricane Katrina: it's complicated

Posted By on Wed, Apr 18, 2018 at 3:33 PM

Barbara Bush, in an official White House portrait in 1992. - WHITE HOUSE PHOTO OFFICE/COURTESY GEORGE BUSH PRESIDENTIAL LIBRARY & MUSEUM
  • Barbara Bush, in an official White House portrait in 1992.

Barbara Bush, the former First Lady who died yesterday at 92, will be remembered for many things: her literacy campaign; her support of people with HIV and AIDS; and her fierce loyalty to her family. Encomiums to Bush have poured in from Democrats and Republicans alike, from President Donald Trump (who said scathing things about her during her lifetime) to Gov. John Bel Edwards, who said in a statement, “She was an incredible first lady who served alongside her husband with class, grace and dignity."

New Orleanians who lived through Hurricane Katrina and the federal floods, however, also remember her much-quoted statement that she made to NPR's Marketplace after touring the Houston Astrodome and meeting with Katrina refugees:
"What I'm hearing, which is sort of scary, is that they all want to stay in Texas. Everybody is so overwhelmed by the hospitality. And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway so this ... this is working very well for them."
Bush's statement was hardly the least sensitive delivered in those frightening, confusing days. Far worse was that of then-U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colorado, who said, ""Given the abysmal failure of state and local officials in Louisiana to plan adequately for or respond to the effects of Hurricane Katrina on the city of New Orleans, and given the long history of public corruption in Louisiana, I hope the House will refrain from directly appropriating any funds ... to either the state of Louisiana or the city of New Orleans."

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Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Ellen DeGeneres snarked on local one-of-a-kind performer Valerie Sassyfras on her show today

Posted By on Wed, Apr 11, 2018 at 5:57 PM

Valerie Sassyfras (seen here performing at the Palm Court Jazz Cafe) was featured on Ellen DeGeneres' show today — and Ellen was kinda mean about it. - PHOTO BY ZACK SMITH PHOTOGRAPHY
  • Valerie Sassyfras (seen here performing at the Palm Court Jazz Cafe) was featured on Ellen DeGeneres' show today — and Ellen was kinda mean about it.

New Orleans-born talk show host Ellen DeGeneres showed a video clip today of a fellow New Orleans artist performing her song "Girls Night Out" to what appears to be a children's birthday party — and was sorta Mean Girls about the whole thing.

"She's not playing to her crowd. She's in her own little head," DeGeneres said witheringly. "I'd love to know where that is. I'd love to know more about her."

Ellen! It's Valerie Sassyfras, from your home town! As profiled in Gambit last December on the occasion of her album release! Do you not read Gambit? Has Hollywood changed you that much?

You're the purported Queen of Nice; why are you snarking on Valerie instead of having her on your show?

Update: The video was shot by PopSmartNOLA founder/editor David Lee Simmons (a former Gambit staffer), who says the performance occurred at a children's Mardi Gras parade at Confetti Park — not at a children's birthday party, as DeGeneres said. The original video now has more than 315,000 views on YouTube.

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Thursday, January 25, 2018

New York Times '52 Places to Go' reporter: No one walks on the streets after dark in New Orleans

Posted By on Thu, Jan 25, 2018 at 2:15 PM


Well, here's something from a New York Times reporter that the New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau won't be touting (for a change):
That's the Twitter account of Jada Yuan, The New York Times' "52 Places to Go" reporter, who will be traveling the globe over the next year, reporting from the Times' much-touted list of travel destinations — of which New Orleans was No. 1, baby. (Based on Yuan's observation, it's more like No. 1 with a bullet.)

The world's top tourist destination where you can't leave the house after dark? That may seem contradictory, but it's also very 2018, yes?

Nevertheless, Yuan likes us; she really likes us, even though we're "dangerous territory":

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Thursday, January 11, 2018

Cedric Richmond: Trump's 'shithole' remark 'proof that his Make America Great Again agenda is really a Make America White Again agenda'

Posted By on Thu, Jan 11, 2018 at 6:45 PM

U.S. Rep. Cedric Richmond.
  • U.S. Rep. Cedric Richmond.

After multiple news outlets reported President Donald Trump referred to Haiti, El Salvador and African nations as "shithole countries" in a meeting about immigration reform — and the White House did not deny it — Democratic and some Republican lawmakers were quick to condemn the statement.

But it was Louisiana's sole Democratic Congressional representative, U.S. Rep. Cedric Richmond, who produced one of the strongest replies to Trump, in his role as the head of the Congressional Black Caucus, saying "his Make America Great Again agenda is really a Make America White Again agenda":

Richmond later issued a complete statement:

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Sunday, December 31, 2017

12 Clancy DuBos 'Politics' columns of 2017

Posted By on Sun, Dec 31, 2017 at 12:00 PM

In our annual Year in Review issue, Gambit political editor Clancy DuBos always composes his Top 10 political stories of the year. Here are 12 of his "Politics" columns from 2017.

• Counting coup, for now: DA Leon Cannizzaro and Mayor Mitch Landrieu exchange barbs over funding and crime

• All-out war in Jefferson Parish: Mike Yenni and Chris Roberts have accused each other of being unfit for office

• The target is truth itself: A National World War II exhibit on Nazi propaganda resonates today

• Our monumental challenge: Coming to grips with the past as the city takes down its monuments to the Confederacy

• Disarm all abusers: House Bill 223 prevents domestic abusers from possessing guns

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Thursday, November 16, 2017

Steve Scalise, Rosie O'Donnell mix it up on Twitter

Posted By on Thu, Nov 16, 2017 at 5:51 PM

  • Rosie O'Donnell.

Once again demonstrating that modern life is basically the fourth grade writ large, with consequences that likely will mean the death of all of us, comedian and professional Donald Trump irritant Rosie O'Donnell mixed it up with House Majority Whip Steve Scalise after he crowed about the U.S. House of Representatives passing its controversial tax cut bill
To which O'Donnell replied ...

To which Scalise replied ...

(As we all know, in the South "Bless your heart!" is just a different way to pronounce "Go fuck yourself.") Scalise's riposte was enough to make O'Donnell switch from all lower case to ALL CAPS in a hurry.

More maturity under the jump ...

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Monday, November 6, 2017

Want to have lunch with Donna Brazile and ask her a few things? Next week's your chance

Posted By on Mon, Nov 6, 2017 at 4:20 PM

Louisiana native Donna Brazile led the Democratic National Committee during the 2016 election. - CREATIVE COMMONS/TIM PIERCE
  • Louisiana native Donna Brazile led the Democratic National Committee during the 2016 election.

Former Democratic National Committee (DNC) head (and New Orleans native) Donna Brazile is coming home next week to speak to the annual Independent Women's Organization (IWO) at the group's annual fundraising lunch.

Brazile has been in the news a lot in the last week, mostly regarding her recently published memoir about Hillary Clinton's 2016 presidential campaign, Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns that Put Donald Trump in the White House. In it, she says the Clinton campaign controlled the DNC's fundraising, to the detriment of challenger U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders. (Former Clinton staffers and many Democratic leaders dispute this.)

But it was one comment she made yesterday on ABC's This Week With George Stephanopoulos that may raise some eyebrows in Louisiana in particular: that her experience at the DNC was worse for her than Hurricane Katrina and the federal floods.

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Wednesday, October 25, 2017

The Parkway Thanksgiving po-boy vs. Trader Joe's 'Turkey Gobbler Wrap'

Posted By on Wed, Oct 25, 2017 at 4:17 PM

You, sir, are no Parkway Thanksgiving po-boy.
  • You, sir, are no Parkway Thanksgiving po-boy.

Next week brings the annual return of Parkway Bakery and Tavern's Thanksgiving po-boy — roasted turkey, stuffing, gravy and cranberry sauce on a Leidenheimer loaf — which is a dish for which people line up each Wednesday in November until it disappears again. It's pretty good. (And this year, as Ian McNulty reports in The New Orleans Advocate, you can skip the line with a $100 donation to charity.)

It seems Trader Joe's is trying to get in on the Thanksgiving-sandwich action with something called a "Turkey Gobbler Wrap" — turkey, dressing, cranberries and cream cheese in a wheat wrap. It was one of the few foods at TJ's this month that wasn't pumpkin spice-flavored, so I thought it might be worth a try.
First, let's take a look at a Parkway Thanksgiving po-boy from years past. Like most po-boys, it's beautiful on the outside, not so much on the inside:

Parkway Bakery & Tavern's Thanksgiving po-boy.
  • Parkway Bakery & Tavern's Thanksgiving po-boy.

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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Editorial: After Charlottesville

Posted By on Thu, Aug 17, 2017 at 6:09 PM

Charlottesville, Virginia, Aug. 12, 2017. - CREATIVE COMMONS/ANTHONY CRIDER
  • Charlottesville, Virginia, Aug. 12, 2017.

Watching the images and hearing the words out of Charlottesville, Virginia last weekend was depressing, sickening, infuriating — and necessary. Necessary because the country got a good look at the people who call themselves the “alt-right,” which is their sanitized term for neo-Nazis, white supremacists, Klansmen and other haters who feel emboldened in America today. It’s also necessary because some of them are planning similar rallies in Boston, San Francisco and elsewhere in the coming days and weeks.

Some of the malefactors who caused harm in Charlottesville also were in New Orleans during the weeks surrounding the hotly contested removal of four Confederate monuments. It’s easy to say New Orleans was lucky it didn’t have the chaos and death that marked Charlottesville, but it was more than luck. It was planning.

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Monday, July 24, 2017

Alabama Senate candidate uses audio of Scalise shooting in campaign ad

Posted By on Mon, Jul 24, 2017 at 2:42 PM

U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks.
  • U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks.

Audio from last month's shooting of U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise and three others at a baseball field in Virginia is being used in a campaign ad by a U.S. Representative from Alabama  who hopes to replace Jeff Sessions in the Senate.
U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks, a Republican running in a Senate special election to replace Sessions, debuted the ad featuring the sound of gunshots and the information that "Mo Brooks gives his belt as a tourniquet to help the wounded." It closes with a gripe about the "liberal media" asking Brooks questions about gun control after the tragedy, and reiterates Brooks' support of the Second Amendment.

Brett Horton, Scalise's chief of staff, tweeted that the audio "makes my stomach turn," while an unnamed spokesperson for Scalise told NBC News, “I guess some people have their own ideas about what’s appropriate."

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