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⚜ Rapides Parish Weather Advisories ⚜


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I-49 at Pineville Expressway

I-49: I-49 at US-71

I-49 at US-71

I-49: I-49 at US-165/71

I-49 at US-165/71


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  • Trump meeting with G-7 leaders after going on offensive
    It's the final stop of his first international trip as president.
  • Optimum Performance: Are we pitching our kids into trouble?
    Researchers from various departments at the Universities of Pittsburgh and Kentucky say that, "more than 50 percent of Little League pitchers experienced shoulder or elbow pain during the course of a season, with incidence often related to the duration of exposure."
  • Airlines have rules about taking photos, video on planes
    Be careful what you video on your next flight, it could be against airline rules.
  • Egypt: 23 dead as gunmen fire on bus carrying Coptic Christians
    Unidentified gunmen in Egypt opened fire on a bus carrying Coptic Christians, killing 23 people, according to state-run media.
  • Man robbed at gunpoint during home invasion
    Shreveport police are looking for the group of men who robbed a man at gunpoint during a home invasion Friday morning.
  • Police: Naked man died after shock from officer's Taser
    A Wisconsin man who authorities said was naked and flooding his apartment stopped breathing and died Thursday morning after being shocked by a police officer's Taser, authorities said.
  • High river shouldn't scare off Venice anglers
    Reds, specks biting well despite dirty water.
  • Motorcycle crash sends man to hospital
    A man is fighting for his life after police say he lost control of his motorcycle and crashed in Shreveport Thursday night.
  • 1821: John James Audubon draws inspiration from Louisiana
    Part of a tricentennial series looking back at the people and events that made New Orleans.
  • How the brown pelican came back from the brink of extinction
    Part of a tricentennial series looking back at the people and events that made New Orleans.
  • Toddler hit by brick thrown through car window
    Detroit police are trying to find out who threw a brick into a family’s car and caused a 2-year-old girl to be hospitalized with a fractured skull.
  • Daughter to bury father missing for 50 years in Vietnam
    Deborah Crosby and her brothers will receive a casket carrying the remains of Lt. Commander Frederick P. Crosby on Friday in San Diego.
  • Teacher gives student 'most likely to become a terrorist' award
    The student said the teacher meant it to be "funny."
  • Homeschooled teen petitions to march at high school graduation
    Owen Bick says he isn't asking for a diploma — he just wants to walk with his friends.
  • Lawsuit alleges GM cheated on diesel pickup truck emissions
    Shares of General Motors fell Thursday after a federal court lawsuit alleged that its diesel pickup trucks cheat on emissions tests.
  • LeBron James seeks his own legacy in face of Michael Jordan comparison
    LeBron James remains determined to not let his career be defined by Michael Jordan comparisons.       
  • Bombers identified, 3 arrested in connection with suicide blasts at Jakarta bus station
    The bombings, which took place at a bus station in the Indonesian capital, killed at least three police officers and wounded six officers and five civilians, police said.
  • Hairspray can shatters car windshield
    The temperature outside was around 90 degrees that day, creating the circumstances for an aerosol can to explode.
  • Pirates rookie Ngoepe 1st African player to reach majors
    The Pittsburgh Pirates have called up infielder Gift Ngoepe, making him what they say is the first player from Africa to reach the major leagues.
  • Robbers hold up jewelry store, make off with $800,000
    One of the men had positioned himself outside of the store wearing a white hazmat suit and holding a sign that read "Danger asbestos. Men at work."
  • Lawsuit: Nurse raped during Chicago-area hospital standoff
    Two nurses held hostage by inmate at Chicago-area hospital file federal lawsuit alleging they were violently assaulted and that man was known security risk.
  • D'oh? No! Homer and 'The Simpsons' team earn Hall of Fame tribute
    The baseball Hall of Fame is set to pay tribute this weekend to one of the most popular TV episodes ever done by 'The Simpsons.'
  • LeBron James breaks Michael Jordan's playoff scoring record
    LeBron James surpassed Michael Jordan for the top spot on the NBA's all-time playoff scoring list on Thursday night.
  • Chris Kunitz is unlikely hero to give Pittsburgh Penguins chance at Stanley Cup history
    Chris Kunitz gives Penguins shot at being first team in 19 years to win back-to-back Stanley Cups.       
  • Reports: Jared Kushner under FBI scrutiny in Russia investigation
    Kushner currently serves as an influential White House adviser.
  • Alabama executes Tommy Arthur for murder-for-hire; final words: 'I'm sorry I failed you'
    On Feb. 1, 1982, police found Troy Wicker Jr., of Muscle Shoals, shot to death in his bed -- a gunshot wound to his right eye.
  • Alabama executes man for 1982 murder-for-hire
    Officials say the 75-year-old inmate was pronounced dead Friday following a lethal injection at a southwest Alabama prison.
  • Gianforte wins US House seat day after assault charge
    Republican Greg Gianforte has won the special election for Montana's sole U.S. House seat a day after being charged with assaulting a reporter.
  • Cop dismissed after allegedly soliciting nude photos from woman
    The police officer was previously accused of offering an 18-year-old driver warnings instead of traffic violations in exchange for sexually explicit photos, investigators said.
  • SEC Pitcher of the Year? Only until LSU and Alex Lange showed up
    The second-seeded Tigers blitzed Hjelle with a pair of five-run innings in the second and fifth innings for a stunning 10-0 victory that was called in the seventh inning because of the 10-run rule.
  • Trump budget dismays families hit by opioid addiction crisis
    Trump's budget released this week would reduce funding for addiction treatment, research and prevention.
  • Greg Gianforte wins Montana House race, then apologizes to reporter for attack
    Republican Greg Gianforte has won the special election for Montana's sole U.S. House seat a day after being charged with assaulting a reporter.
  • LSU makes short work of Kentucky to reach SEC Tournament semifinal
    The Tigers score 10 runs in a fourth consecutive game.
  • LeBron James surpasses Michael Jordan; Cavs return to NBA Finals
    Cleveland beats Boston Celtics 135-102; James heads to Finals for seventh consecutive year
  • 7th Ward heroin-ring leader, key players sentenced in federal court
    Darrell "Lil' Darrell" Lewis, 32, head of a 7th Ward-based heroin ring, was sentenced to 20 years.
  • Alex Lange moves ahead of Ben McDonald on LSU career strikeouts list
    His career strikeout total is the most for an LSU pitcher in three seasons.
  • Man shot to the leg on Freret Street: NOPD
    The victim was taken to a local hospital by private vehicle, police said late Thursday (May 25).
  • Your Mail 5-26: What do you prefer?
    Recent editorial, letters illustrate both sides of situation       
  • Carjacking suspect stood in Mid-City street, forcing victim to stop: NOPD
    Three men are suspected of stealing the white 2011 Honda Accord Crosstour on North Rendon Street.
  • Caddo man accused of forcing a kiss on woman outside store
    A Caddo Parish man is accused of forcing a kiss on a woman outside a convenience store. And detectives think this might not be the first time.
  • Sam Mitchell a candidate for New Orleans Pelicans coaching staff: report
    He was the NBA Coach of the Year in 2007
  • 2nd Circuit vacates Shreveport man's murder conviction
    Now Breonne Whitaker's case is headed back to the trial court.
  • Gretna police release videos of struggle with man who later died, say officers 'responded reasonably'
    Relatives of Kendole Joseph, 27, have filed a federal wrongful death lawsuit against the Gretna Police Department.
  • LSU's ex-offensive coordinator Steve Ensminger happy to be back with TEs
    Ensminger said the Tigers installed 50 to 60 percent of Matt Canada's new offense during the spring.
  • Trump chastises fellow NATO members over defense spending; Possible motive emerges in Manchester bombing (10 Things to Know for Friday)
    Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday.
  • She saved $3,786 by shopping her MRI; here's how you can save, too
    After our PriceCheck tool, the woman cancelled the MRI at her hospital and used a less costlier provider.
  • Man hurt in Gentilly Terrace shooting: NOPD
    The victim, wounded in the 2500 block of Sage Street, was taken to a local hospital, police said.
  • Anonymous student data may be shared with researchers
    National research organizations may soon get access to Louisiana students’ unidentified personal information.       
  • Anonymous student data may be shared with researchers
    National research organizations may soon get access to Louisiana students’ unidentified personal information.       
  • Why Ed Orgeron missed the last Louisiana stop of the Tiger Tour
    LSU tight ends coach Steve Ensminger filled in for Orgeron as a speaker at event
  • Jared Kushner under FBI scrutiny in Russia investigation
    At this time, Kushner is not regarded as a formal target of the probe, however.       
  • Bills held hostage in legislative chess game
    Democrats make move to hold up construction bill, GOP counters by blocking justice reform package.       
  • Bills held hostage in legislative chess game
    Democrats make move to hold up construction bill, GOP counters by blocking justice reform package.       
  • Menard's Smith signs with LSUA
    On her way to scoring more than 1,400 points in her career at Menard, it was how Maddie Smith got her points that made it impressive.       
  • Menard's Smith signs with LSUA
    On her way to scoring more than 1,400 points in her career at Menard, it was how Maddie Smith got her points that made it impressive.       
  • LSU continues SEC Tournament play against Kentucky: Updates recap
    The winner advances to the semifinal round Saturday.
  • For Indianapolis, not even the Super Bowl hits Indy 500 heights
    For Indianapolis, not even the Super Bowl hits Indy 500 heights       
  • Coliseum to host televised boxing event
    The Rapides Parish Coliseum is not pulling any punches when it comes to landing marquee events.       
  • Coliseum to host televised boxing event
    The Rapides Parish Coliseum is not pulling any punches when it comes to landing marquee events.       
  • Rain helps Montana man find pea-size diamond in SWAR park
    Rainfall recently led to the second-largest diamond find this month at a Southwest Arkansas state park, officials say. 
  • Central Louisiana's Top 5 returning running backs to watch
    Often the workhorses of the gridiron, a running back has a simple yet complex life.       
  • Central Louisiana's Top 5 returning running backs to watch
    Often the workhorses of the gridiron, a running back has a simple yet complex life.       
  • Elmer man accused in theft
    An Elmer man banned from a property allegedly returned to steal items, according to the Rapides Parish Sheriff's Office.       
  • Elmer man accused in theft
    An Elmer man banned from a property allegedly returned to steal items, according to the Rapides Parish Sheriff's Office.       
  • Volunteers adorn ETX cemetery with a sea of red, white, blue
    Volunteers have placed more than 1,200 American flags in the Gardens at Hillcrest Cemetery in preparation for Memorial Day.
  • Girl studies hours each day for Scripps Spelling Bee
    Naysa Modi studies as many hours a day as she can "without breaking," especially when it's almost time to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.       
  • Kennedy, others co-sponsor effort to reform Veteran Affairs
    U.S. Sen. John Kennedy, of Louisiana, says reforming veterans' care is a top priority for lawmakers when they return in June. He and others are sponsoring legislation to increase accountability within the Veterans Affairs Department and to protect its whistleblowers.
  • Shreveport to open pilot bicycle path
    Bike Shreveport will hold a Slow Roll Ride along parts of the route after the city conducts a brief ceremony.
  • CMPD: Body of missing Charlotte Uber driver believed to be found in SC
    The discovery was made in a wooded area on the 2500 block of Mt. Gallant Road.
  • 2nd suspect charged in multi-parish burglary spree
    Another New Iberia man has been charged in a rash of burglaries that hit Rapides business and churches last year.       
  • 2nd suspect charged in multi-parish burglary spree
    Another New Iberia man has been charged in a rash of burglaries that hit Rapides business and churches last year.       
  • Coming soon: a local ice cream spot
    Beans n' Cream opens Tuesday in the new Versailles Shopping Center.       
  • Coming soon: a local ice cream spot
    Beans n' Cream opens Tuesday in the new Versailles Shopping Center.       
  • G-7 security tight in case of terrorist attack — or even volcanic eruption
    President Trump meets with leaders of six other major nations for two days in Sicily.       
  • Woman jumps on hood to stop car theft
    A video of a Milwaukee woman jumping on a car to stop thieves from taking it has gone viral.       
  • Woman jumps on hood to stop car theft
    A video of a Milwaukee woman jumping on a car to stop thieves from taking it has gone viral.       
  • Students help state park in jeopardy of closing
    A group of students spent their spring break weeding and trimming.       
  • Students help state park in jeopardy of closing
    A group of students spent their spring break weeding and trimming.       
  • City alleges more improper purchases by employee
    In a lawsuit, Daniel Williams is accused of falsifying details of city credit card purchases to make them look like official business       
  • City alleges more improper purchases by employee
    In a lawsuit, Daniel Williams is accused of falsifying details of city credit card purchases to make them look like official business       
  • Group wants to reopen a Boys & Girls Club
    A petition to open a club has received more than 800 signatures and signaled that there is interest to one nonprofit.       
  • Group wants to reopen a Boys & Girls Club
    A petition to open a club has received more than 800 signatures and signaled that there is interest to one nonprofit.       
  • New Orleans Saints OTAs
          
  • New Orleans Saints OTAs
          
  • Family of Texarkana inmate who died sues jail, others
    A federal lawsuit has been filed by the family of an inmate who died in an East Texas prison. The wrongful death petition alleges that an excessive use of force, the excessive use of pepper spray and the failure to provide adequate medical care led to the death of 35-year-old Michael Sabbie. The Texarkana man was found dead in his cell in Bi-State Justice Center in Texarkana, Texas, in July 2015. The FBI investigated.  No charges were filed. Now Sabbie's family is suing Sout...
  • LaDOTD unveiling Jimmie Davis Bridge project details
    The public got its first chance to see and hear the latest plans for the Jimmie Davis Bridge on Thursday night. 
  • Case of negligent homicide of child heading to court
    A Natchitoches case featured in an Associated Press-USA Today Network special investigation will head to court on July 11.       
  • Case of negligent homicide of child heading to court
    A Natchitoches case featured in an Associated Press-USA Today Network special investigation will head to court on July 11.       
  • Social media goes wild after Trump shoves leader
    During his first joint meeting with North Atlantic Treaty Organization leaders, President Trump on Thursday appeared to push aside the prime minister of Montenegro.       
  • Social media goes wild after Trump shoves leader
    During his first joint meeting with North Atlantic Treaty Organization leaders, President Trump on Thursday appeared to push aside the prime minister of Montenegro.       
  • Mike Pence could get rough reception at Indianapolis 500
    Mike Pence could get rough reception at Indianapolis 500       
  • Suicide prevention training may be mandatory for schools
    The Louisiana Senate on Thursday unanimously passed a bill that would require all charter and nonpublic schoolteachers, counselors, principals and other administrators to undergo two hours of in-service training in suicide prevention.       
  • ESPN reveals college football schedule for Week 1 and other prime time games
    Big Ten, Alabama and Florida State get first exposure before Oklahoma-Ohio State in Week 2.       
  • Water patrol offers tips to safely enjoy holiday weekend
    If you plan on being out on the water this weekend, make sure you have a plan. Memorial Day is also the start of boating season, which means plenty of boats and jet-skis out at places like Cross Lake, Cypress Lake, Caddo Lake, and the Red River.
  • House Democratic Caucus chair: 'It's the only move we've got'
    House Democratic Caucus Chairman Gene Reynolds, D-Minden, said his members are holding up the state's construction bill and the bill that provides financing for it in an attempt to gain concessions from Republicans, which hold a large majority in the House.       
  • House Democratic Caucus chair: 'It's the only move we've got'
    House Democratic Caucus Chairman Gene Reynolds, D-Minden, said his members are holding up the state's construction bill and the bill that provides financing for it in an attempt to gain concessions from Republicans, which hold a large majority in the House.       
  • Erwin: Time to invest in our roads and our future
    Louisiana hasn’t adjusted its gasoline tax in 27 years.       
  • Joe Lieberman withdraws name from FBI director consideration
    Former senator Joe Lieberman on Thursday withdrew his name from the FBI director candidate pool.       
  • Student takes company to national competition
    Heather Small Hawley It’s not everyday that a 14-year-old owns their own business, but Dakota Carpenter, of Choudrant, does. Dakota will begin 10th grade at Darbonne Woods Charter School in the fall, but for now, she is focused on her business — Agua Plantas. She was able to create her business through the help of the Young Entrepreneurs Academy. YEA! is a program of the Ruston-Lincoln Chamber of Commerce. “My mom works at the Chamber and last year they did it and I thought it was cool,” Dakota said. “So this year my mom encouraged me to do it, so I did.” Full text of this article is available to subscribers only. Login if you are already a subscriber. If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe to the online version here. read more
  • Hurricane preparedness
    Sales tax discount available for certain items this weekend Derek J. Amaya Lincoln Parish residents can purchase flashlights, batteries, portable generators and other emergency supplies at a reduced state sales tax during the state Hurricane Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday Saturday and Sunday. The state holiday provides a 2 percent exemption from the state sales tax on statutorily specified hurricane preparedness items. This means eligible purchases are subject to only 3 percent state sales tax instead of the full 5 percent to prepare for the upcoming hurricane season starting June 1. Full text of this article is available to subscribers only. Login if you are already a subscriber. If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe to the online version here. read more
  • Instructor honored with lifetime service award
    Leader News Service The Association of Child Life Professionals Board of Directors will present Louisiana Tech University Family and Child Studies instructor Anita Pumphrey with a Distinguished Lifetime Service Award during the organization’s 35th annual conference that will be held this week in Las Vegas. Pumphrey started the first child life program at St. Francis Medical Center in Monroe before joining Louisiana Tech’s School of Human Ecology in 1995 as a family and child studies instructor. Full text of this article is available to subscribers only. Login if you are already a subscriber. If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe to the online version here. read more
  • Students give back to Hodges Gardens State Park
    A group of students from University of Louisiana at Lafayette and Nicholls State spent the week volunteering at Hodges Gardens State Park in Florien. They are involved in the student organization Chi Alpha Christian Fellowship at their campuses.       
  • Murals, statues paint picture
    Derek J. Amaya As the old saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. In the case of the city of Ruston, murals and bulldog sculptures will help write the beginning sentences of the thousand-word opus that is the community. The chain reaction began when the city was approved to be a Cultural District by the state Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism in 2016. As a result, a Cultural Board was created to support growth, especially in the arts community, an enthusiastic, ideological group mostly filled with Ruston’s younger inhabitants. Full text of this article is available to subscribers only. Login if you are already a subscriber. If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe to the online version here. read more
  • Tech hits record milestone
    It was a day of milestones Saturday as Louisiana Tech University held its 320th Commencement Exercises at the Thomas Assembly Center. Full text of this article is available to subscribers only. Login if you are already a subscriber. If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe to the online version here. read more
  • Tech Track and Field places 3 on C-USA All-Academic Team
    Leader Sports Service Louisiana Tech placed three student-athletes on the 2017 InTouch Credit Union Conference USA Track and Field All-Academic Team, the league office announced Wednesday. Louisiana Tech had two women earn the academic honor in Kacie Kaufman and Morgan Keesee, while Drake Heinz represented the Bulldogs on the men’s side. Full text of this article is available to subscribers only. Login if you are already a subscriber. If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe to the online version here. read more
  • LORDS OF THE RINGS: G-Men get title hardware
    Sarah-Renee Garner, GSU Media Bureau Photo by GLENN LEWIS/GSU MEDIA BUREAU - (Top) From left to right, former Grambling State interim athletics director Obidiah Simmons, head football coach Broderick Fobbs, GSU president Rick Gallot and new AD Paul Bryant pose with GSU’s Southwestern Athletic Conference championship (left) and Celebration Bowl championship trophies. (Bottom Left) The 2016 Grambling State University National HBCU Football Championship Ring. (Bottom Right) GSU running back Martez Carter, left, and quarterback DeVante Kincade show off their championship bling. After an outstanding fall 2016 football season, the Grambling State University championship football team started wearing big rings proving that they are the 2016 HBCU National Champions. “It’s a great feeling to win both championships, the SWAC championship, and the national championship. To finally get the ring is just a great feeling to have,” said Quintin Guice, 18, a wide receiver and sophomore engineering technology major from Monroe. Full text of this article is available to subscribers only. Login if you are already a subscriber. If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe to the online version here. read more
  • Diamond ’Dogs fall in tourney opener
    Tech faces elimination game vs. USM at 12:30 p.m. today Leader Sports Service BILOXI, Miss. — An early deficit was too much to overcome as Louisiana Tech fell to Charlotte 7-2 on Wednesday night at MGM Park in Biloxi, Mississippi. Sean Ullrich was the lone run producer for Louisiana Tech, blasting a massive solo home run to left center in the top of the sixth inning. The laser shot left the park in a hurry, but was all Louisiana Tech had to show as the Bulldogs fell to the losers bracket on Wednesday night. Jordan Washam and Jonathan Washam were the only two Bulldogs to register multiple hits in the game, as each twin picked up a pair of hits. Full text of this article is available to subscribers only. Login if you are already a subscriber. If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe to the online version here. read more
  • US: Uzbek man serving sentence in terror plot stabbed warden
    LOS ANGELES— An Uzbek refugee serving 25 years behind bars for a plot to kill U.S. military personnel or civilians has been charged with stabbing the warden at the California federal prison where he was serving his sentence, prosecutors said Thursday. Fazliddin Kurbanov, 34, was indicted Wednesday on charges that included attempted murder of a federal officer. Kurbanov is accused of using a homemade knife to attack the warden at the federal correctional facility in Victorville, California, in May 2016, according to prosecutors. The warden, Calvin Johnson, was seriously injured but has since recovered, prosecutors said. He now works at another Federal Bureau of Prisons facility. Kurbanov was convicted last year of conspiring and attempting to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization and possessing an unregistered destructive device. Prosecutors said the Russian-speaking truck driver who fled Uzbekistan in 2009 had downloaded jihadist and martyrdom videos from a terrorist website and communicated with a terrorist organization, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan. Authorities monitored his communications and arrested him in 2013. Kurbanov bought bags of fertilizer and other bomb-making materials and had an unwavering commitment to kill personnel at a military base or civilians at crowded Fourth of July celebrations in downtown Boise, Idaho, authorities said. He also discussed targeting the West Point Military Academy in New York, according to prosecutors. Kurbanov had maintained his innocence in the case. At his January 2016 sentencing, he told a federal judge, "I've never been a terrorist."
  • Louisiana House snubs call to keep automatic guns from kids
    BATON ROUGE — Louisiana lawmakers have spiked a proposal to keep fully automatic weapons away from young children. The House voted 61-21 Thursday against Rep. Barbara Norton's bill to fine, and possibly imprison, people who allow children under 13 to handle fully automatic firearms. The Shreveport Democrat proposed the bill after a 9-year-old Arizona girl lost control of the Uzi submachine gun she was firing and fatally shot her gun range instructor in 2014. Bill opponents said Norton's intentions are admirable, but called her proposal vague. Lafayette Rep. Stuart Bishop feared being fined for letting his child shoot a paintball gun, which he said could be considered a fully automatic gun, under the measure's definition. Livingston Rep. Sherman Mack said current child endangerment laws make the bill unnecessary. --- House Bill 67: http://www.legis.la.gov
  • Renaissance Southwest to perform at cathedral, Good Shepherd
    Music created by centuries of Christian composers to aid in worship services will be performed at two events in Lake Charles.  A new group, Renaissance Southwest, will perform at 7:30 p.m. May 26, at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, 935 Bilbo St.  A traditional choral evensong will be presented by the choir at 5:45 p.m. on May 28, at Good Shepherd Episcopal Church, 715 Kirkman St. Both events are free and open to the public. Renaissance Southwest is composed of eight singers from the choirs of Good Shepherd, McNeese State University, and the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. This group was co-founded by Dr. Carol Lines and Dr. Patrick Parker, who is also the director. Choir members are Layton Bergstedt, Emmie Lancon, Ann Eisen, Noah Lanier, Sheila MacKay, and Jordy Stanley.  The program is entitled “Annum per Annum” (year after year) and will include Renaissance choral and organ music created for the different feast days of the liturgical calendar. Selections by Allegri, Batten, Bibel, Palestrina, Rheinberger, Tallis, Victoria, and others will be performed.  This Sunday’s Choral Evensong is an Anglican service sung at the close of day in Cathedrals and churches throughout the world. It is a service of evening prayer, derived from the ancient offices of Vespers and Compline. It is designed to give people an opportunity for rest and mindfulness before the start of a busy week, according to Parker, music director and organist at Good Shepherd.  The program on Sunday features music composed for the feast day of Ascension. Music from the Renaissance, Baroque and 20th century will create a contemplative mood, according to Parker. The service is composed of music and readings, with no sermon or eucharist. Reverend Jack Myers will be the cantor. Special music begins at 5:45 with the organ Voluntary “Majesté du Christ demandant sa gloire à son Père (Majesty of Christ praying that His Father should glorify Him)” from “L’Ascension” by Messiaen. The Anthem will be “O God the King of Glory” by Henry Purcell. The closing Voluntary will be “Prière du Christ montant vers son Père (Prayer from Christ ascending towards His Father),” also from “L’Ascension.” A reception will follow. l For more information, see Music at Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd on Facebook.
  • NOAA hurricane forecast: Above-normal season expected
    The federal government predicts a busy 2017 hurricane season for the Atlantic Basin, with 5 to 9 hurricanes expected to form.       
  • NOAA hurricane forecast: Above-normal season expected
    The federal government predicts a busy 2017 hurricane season for the Atlantic Basin, with 5 to 9 hurricanes expected to form.       
  • New wastewater facility opens at Fort Polk
    Fort Polk and local officials cut the ribbon Wednesday on a new wastewater treatment plant. The plant, on the south side of the post, can process 3.8 million gallons of wastewater — a capability that can increase to 4.6 million gallons. American Water President Todd Duerr said the plant will help grow the military installation over the next 50 years. Brigadier Gen. Gary M. Brito said the plant is another investment in making Fort Polk a “premier installation.” “We’ve made improvements to our infrastructure and opened up a new school just about one year ago,” Brito said. “These are all investments to both on post and off post intended to make the quality of life better for the troops, their families and the community that supports us.” Duerr said the project, completed in four years, cost $80 million. As part of the project, 35,000 pine saplings were planted in the area for reforestation.  
  • Manchester bombing: Trump orders probe of investigation leaks
    President Trump ordered the Justice Department to probe alleged information leaks by U.S. officials regarding the deadly concert bombing investigation here after British authorities announced Thursday they would stop sharing intelligence due to leaks of confidential and sensitive details about the case.       
  • Manchester bombing: Trump orders probe of investigation leaks
    President Trump ordered the Justice Department to probe alleged information leaks by U.S. officials regarding the deadly concert bombing investigation here after British authorities announced Thursday they would stop sharing intelligence due to leaks of confidential and sensitive details about the case.       
  • Texas man sentenced for indecent behavior
    A 36-year-old Beaumont, Texas, man convicted of indecent behavior with a juvenile was sentenced Wednesday in state district court. Joshua Hall pleaded no contest March 20 to a charge that he showed a 5-year-old girl his “private parts” and asked her to touch them Jan. 31, 2015. Hall was sentenced to seven years in prison, with two years suspended, and two years’ probation. He must register as a sex offender for 15 years after being released. Hall, who was convicted in 1993 of sexually assaulting a child in Texas, was arrested in Vinton on Feb. 20, 2015, and indicted in April 2015 on one count of molestation of a juvenile. Prosecutors amended the charge to indecent behavior. On Wednesday, Judge Clayton Davis asked defense attorney Shane Hinch about sex crime charges that Hall faces in Texas. Hinch said no court date has been set on the charges and that Texas officials were waiting to see what would transpire in Davis’ courtroom. Davis said the report on the incident indicated behavior that was shocking and disturbing.
  • Leesville council to vote on tighter budget
    LEESVILLE — The City Council will hold a public hearing June 12 to adopt its 2017-2018 budget. City Finance Director Alice Eddington said she made as many cuts as possible to “keep the city within its limits.” She asked council members to look over the plan before next month’s hearing. “There were cuts made to all departments,” Eddington said. “I could not appropriate any additional funds because we just don’t have them at this time.” For areas such as the capital outlay fund, she said she provided just enough to continue operations for the next 12 months. Others, such as the Police Department fund, will remain at a deficit. “That department is a little different than the others because their expenses will vary and are not as predictable,” Eddington said. “It is not unusual for that department to be in a deficit.” She cited the state’s economy and low sales tax revenue as reasons for the tight budget.
  • Jeff Davis free lunch program expanded
    JENNINGS — Fewer students will go hungry this fall in Jeff Davis Parish with the expansion of a federally funded program to provide free meals to students. Free breakfasts and lunches are being provided to all students at Elton Elementary, James Ward Elementary, Welsh Elementary and Lake Arthur Elementary under the Community Eligibility Child Nutrition Provision program. Changes approved by the School Board last week will expand the program to allow all students at Jennings High, Welsh-Roanoke and Lake Arthur High to receive free breakfast and lunches regardless of household income and eligibility. Fenton Elementary will be dropped from the program, but qualifying students will continue to be offered free or reduced-price meals based on income eligibility guidelines. Superintendent Kirk Credeur said the program allows schools with at least 40 percent of the student population considered low-income to feed all students at no cost to families and without requiring families to complete applications. Schools that adopt the program are reimbursed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to help offset the cost of providing the meals, Credeur said. “We have been doing this at some of our schools, and it has been very advantageous,” Credeur said. “The rate of reimbursement for those lunches is higher for us than the old way, which means that we were being able to be closer to break-even on the school lunch program.” Credeur noted that no school lunch program is self-sufficient and that all of them have to be supplemented by the general fund to be viable. “The school lunch program is set up where nobody ever breaks even because if we truly charged students for what it cost to totally fund that meal its significantly more than what we are charging them,” he said. “But by participating in the Community Eligibility Child Nutrition Provision program, the amount the School Board has to supplement is greatly reduced.” When the School Board started looking at the program in 2015, some schools were initially included because they had high economically disadvantaged students, but had low participation. “But by grouping schools in a different way and adding some and removing Fenton, we are able to generate almost $400,000 more for the school district,” Credeur said. “While I’m sad that we have to discontinue Fenton and it was an advantage for those 26 families, from an economic standpoint we have to go the other route because it produces hundreds of thousands of dollars to help us continue to offset the cost that we need.” Students at Fenton will have to complete applications to determine eligibility for free or reduced-price meals for the 2017-2018 school year.
  • LSU rains down runs on Missouri
    From staff reports HOOVER, Ala. — Cole Freeman went 4-for-4, including a three-run home run through the rain in the eighth inning that sealed the deal on LSU’s 10-3 victory over Missouri in the Tigers’ opening game of the Southeastern Conference Tournament. The game was delayed for an hour and half by rain in the bottom of the fifth inning, and the showers had returned by the time Freeman removed all doubt with his second home run of the season for a 10-2 LSU lead. The one win in the tournament likely assured the Tigers (40-17) of earning one of the eight national seeds in the NCAA tournament which begins next week. It was head coach Paul Mainieri’s 500th win in 11 seasons with the Tigers. The rain delay came at a good time for the Tigers, who had gotten five innings out of starting pitcher Caleb Gilbert, who’s normally a set-up man out of the bullpen. Gilbert, who found out he was getting a rare start Tuesday night after scheduled starter sophomore Todd Peterson was suspended for one game, likely wasn’t going to throw much longer. Gilbert gave up a solo home run to Kameron Misner in the second inning, but finished his five-inning stint allowing the one run on three hits. LSU, the No. 2 seed, will have its normal weekend rotation available, starting with Alex Lange (7-5, 2.79 ERA) on the mound against Kentucky (39-18) at 8 p.m. today. The Wildcats beat South Carolina 7-2 to move into the winners’ bracket. The Wildcats, the No. 3 seed, took two of three games from the Tigers in Lexington to win the season series. Missouri (26-22), which eliminated Texas A&M with a 12-7 win on Tuesday, will play South Carolina at 2 p.m. today in an elimination game. Missouri, which is 0-12 all-time against LSU, had its seven-game winning streak snapped. “Obviously for us it was just a tough one tonight,” said Missouri coach Steve Bieser. “We got outplayed. One of the things that (is worth mentioning is) the work that the grounds crew is doing, the field is in great shape. Those guys are doing a heck of a job out there. Really want to thank the SEC and the Hoover Met for putting us in a facility in a place to be able to respond and play well.” Today’s weather forecast is much more encouraging than the first two days. Tonight’s winner advances to Saturday’s semifinals. Wednesday, against Missouri, the first three hitters in the LSU order — Kramer Robertson, Freeman and Antoine Duplantis — combined to go 8-for-13 with seven RBIs while scoring six runs. LSU, which trailed 1-0 early, took control with a four-run third inning. Speed-challenged catcher Michael Papierski led off the inning with a walk and scored all the way from first base Zach Watson’s double to tie the score. After a Robertson single that put runners at the corners, Freeman drove in Watson with a sacrifice fly and Duplantis followed with an RBI single. Nick Coomes finished the rally with an RBI single to score Duplantis. The Tigers added two runs in the fifth — one before the rain delay, one after. Duplantis’ infield single scored Robertson when a throwing error allowed him to come in from second before the skies opened up. After an 81-minute delay, Freeman scored on Coomes ground out. Nick Bush gave LSU two scoreless innings after relieving Gilbert following the rain delay, while Zach Hess and Mathew Beck gave up single runs in the eight and ninth, the latter on a solo home run by Nelson Mompiere. “I think it can be disruptive,” Bieser said of the rain delays. “Tonight I thought it came at a good time for us. It kind of slowed them down and gave us a little bit of time to regroup. As a true competitor, you can’t make excuses because that’s part of the game. We just didn’t respond very well tonight. That’s about as simple as I can put it. We didn’t come back out and respond.”
  • Future of ex-SporTran terminal downtown requires federal OK
    Shreveport city leaders are in the process of trying to figure out what to do with the current downtown Sportran terminal once the new intermodal facility opens. 
  • Terry Bradshaw calls Nick Saban's Alabama salary 'shameful'
    Alabama coach Nick Saban is the highest paid college football coach — set to haul in more than $11 million next season — as well as one of the highest-paid public employees in the country, according to USA TODAY Sports’ salary research database.       
  • Terry Bradshaw calls Nick Saban's Alabama salary 'shameful'
    Alabama coach Nick Saban is the highest paid college football coach — set to haul in more than $11 million next season — as well as one of the highest-paid public employees in the country, according to USA TODAY Sports’ salary research database.       
  • Louisiana Jobs Now Fund bill by Abraham rejected
    BATON ROUGE — House lawmakers on Wednesday rejected legislation that would have set up a fund to pay for degree programs in high-demand job fields using money from an income tax credit for K-12 education. Lawmakers voted 27-65 to reject House Bill 184, by Rep. Mark Abraham, R-Lake Charles. It would have set up the Louisiana Jobs Now Fund. The legislation is tied to lawmakers approving S.B. 25, by Sen. J.P. Morrell, D-New Orleans. That bill would sunset the tax credit, which provides parents with $25 a year for each dependent child in grades K-12. Morrell’s bill is pending action in the House Ways and Means Committee. It passed the Senate 35-1 on May 15. Abraham said the tax credit generates about $12 million annually. Of that, half would go to early childhood development, and the rest would go to the jobs creation fund. Abraham said half of the Jobs Now Fund money would go to the Louisiana Community and Technical College System, while the other half would go to four-year universities. Abraham said there are 10,000 job openings in certain fields because of a lack of trained workers. Rep. J. Rogers Pope, R-Denham Springs, called Abraham’s bill “horrible.” He said it isn’t “good public policy” to pit one group against another. Rep. Jay Morris, R-Monroe, called the measure “another statutory dedication.” “This is the kind of stuff that gets us into trouble,” he said. Abraham said no group asked him to push the legislation. “I saw the need for workforce development,” he said. “I think it’s a great return on investment. Sometimes we have to think outside of the box and do what we believe is the wisest use of the dollars.” Similar legislation, H.B. 202, by Abraham, died in the House Ways and Means Committee on Monday. The legislation would have repealed the educational expenses income tax credit, along with the elementary and secondary school tuition income tax deduction. Reps. Abraham, Mike Danahay, D-Sulphur, Stephen Dwight, R-Moss Bluff, A.B. Franklin, and Dorothy Sue Hill, D-Dry Creek, voted for the measure. James Armes, D-Leesville, John Guinn, R-Jennings, and Frank Howard, R-Many, opposed it. Rep. Bob Hensgens, R-Abbeville, was reported as absent.
  • Alex Lange will pitch tonight vs. Kentucky
    LSU ace says Tigers "peaking at right time"       
  • Alex Lange will pitch tonight vs. Kentucky
    LSU ace says Tigers "peaking at right time"       
  • Bill makes pregnancy prevention part of freshman orientation
    A bill requiring public colleges and universities to offer pregnancy prevention information at freshman orientation easily passed through the Senate chamber Wednesday.       
  • Bill makes pregnancy prevention part of freshman orientation
    A bill requiring public colleges and universities to offer pregnancy prevention information at freshman orientation easily passed through the Senate chamber Wednesday.       
  • Low-income households hardest hit by floods, survey says
    The survey also suggests that Louisiana is slightly more satisfied with the state’s response than with federal response.       
  • Low-income households hardest hit by floods, survey says
    The survey also suggests that Louisiana is slightly more satisfied with the state’s response than with federal response.       
  • VIDEO: Student with disability hits principal during Twinsburg High School graduation
    A shocking video shared on YouTube allegedly shows a student punching a high school faculty member during a high school graduation ceremony. 
  • CBO: House Obamacare repeal will increase uninsured by 23 million
    The Republican bill to repeal and replace Obamacare passed by the House earlier this month would lead to 23 million fewer people having health insurance by 2026, according to an analysis from the Congressional Budget Office released late Wednesday afternoon.       
  • CBO: House Obamacare repeal will increase uninsured by 23 million
    The Republican bill to repeal and replace Obamacare passed by the House earlier this month would lead to 23 million fewer people having health insurance by 2026, according to an analysis from the Congressional Budget Office released late Wednesday afternoon.       
  • Parents want police K9 put down after 5-year-old mauled
    Hurt and confused, a Shreveport family says they've heard nothing from the Bossier City police department after their daughter was mauled by a police K-9 while he was chasing a suspect. 
  • Shreveport authorities investigating two suspicious packages in three days
    Shreveport police have blocked off streets near SPD headquarters due to what appears to be a suspicious package.
  • Shoals murderer Tommy Arthur executed after stay lifted
    Convicted Muscle Shoals murderer Tommy Arthur was executed at about midnight Thursday.
  • JD Police Jury opposes gas tax
    JENNINGS — Jeff Davis Parish Police Juror Byron Buller called for the Police Jury on Wednesday to oppose a proposed 17-cents-per-gallon tax increase on gasoline. Louisiana motorists now pay 38.4 cents in taxes per gallon — 20 cents in state sales taxes and 18.4 cents in federal taxes. Under House Bill 632, by Rep. Steve Carter, R-Baton Rouge, the tax would increase by 17 cents. It would rise every four years, beginning in 2021, to keep up with inflation, with a 3 percent cap on every increase. “We will be 55 cents per gallon, and we have people on low income,” Buller said. “I think this will set us back, and I think our state is very wasteful with the money they are working with. Every time we turn around they cut us, including our severance tax, yet they turned around and got big raises when they went in, then they went and taxed us.” The additional revenue from the tax increase would generate funding for state road improvements and transportation infrastructure, but Buller is concerned about how the money would be spent. He said the current tax was supposed to be used for the same projects, but that Louisiana has some of the worst roads and bridges. “I’m tired of these people we are putting in office. Every time they want to run, their key people call my house for our support,” Buller said. “But when it comes to how we feel about a tax they are going to vote on, no one calls us … you never hear anything from them.” The sales tax on gasoline has not changed since 1990, when legislators approved a 4-cents-per-gallon increase.
  • Bossier City police investigating deadly shooting
    One man is dead after an early morning shooting in Bossier City on Thursday.
  • Fundraiser concert will benefit music museum
    A concert and fundraiser to benefit the Music Museum of Southwest Louisiana will be at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, May 27, in Sloppy’s Downtown. Cajun music trio Nee de Traditionne (Born from Tradition) will kick off the concert with a tribute to Iry LeJeune, an accordion pioneer in the late 1940s. Before he died at 26 years old, LeJeune recorded with Eddie Shuler at Goldband Records in Lake Charles. Entertainment will continue through the evening with the psych-pop of Dorian Phibian, folk-pop singer Brittany Pfantz, the reggae/rock/dub of Inner Gee, banjo player Kory Lambert, and the Sinners, whose influences are deeply rooted in country, soul and rock ’n’ roll. Paul Dufrene of Platter Playlists will spin classic Louisiana tunes on vinyl during the evening. Items recovered from the recently demolished Goldband Records building will be on display at the event. Goldband was located on Church Street and was the first recording company to record Dolly Parton when she did her first single, “Puppy Love,” at the studio in 1959. Goldband was also where Phil Phillips recorded “Sea of Love” in 1959, which was arranged and produced by Shuler. The song became a Top 10 hit and sold more than 10 million copies. Tickets are $10 at the door. “Our goal is to help promote the current music scene while also preserving the past musical history,” said Jody Taylor, a volunteer board member of the music museum, a local nonprofit. For more information, visit Music Museum of Southwest Louisiana on Facebook or email musicmuseumSWLA@gmail.com.
  • LC man charged in fatal shooting
    A 20-year-old Lake Charles man has been arrested in connection with a fatal shooting Wednesday morning in the 1500 block of Fournet Street, authorities said. Lake Charles police said Devlon Willis-Muhammad, of 1517 Fournet St., was charged with the second-degree murder of Robert Bracy, 27. Judge Mike Canaday set bond at $1.5 million. Lt. Richard Harrell said police received a call about the shooting at 7:38 a.m. He said the men argued and that Willis-Muhammad produced a handgun and shot toward Bracy, striking him multiple times.
  • Works of Women: Sulphur exhibit features over 200 works by female artists
    An opening reception for the exhibit “Works of Women 2017” will be 5-7 p.m. today, May 25, in the Henning Cultural Center, 923 Ruth St. in Sulphur. The exhibit, featuring over 200 works by more than 40 female artists, will run through July 31. “We’ve put together a really good art show this year that we’re very excited about,” said Eric Manuel, creative director of the Henning Cultural Center. “There are some wonderful and very unique pieces in the show.” Among them, he said, is a piece on Albert Einstein that weighs about 90 pounds and features metal and gears. It was created by Martha Ward, a former art teacher at Sulphur High. Exhibit hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday and 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday. For more information, call 527-0357.
  • Havens General Store: Fields establishment offers old-fashioned, one-stop shopping and dining experience
    The Beauregard Parish community of Fields isn’t what you’d call a thriving metropolis. The school, Hyatt High School, closed in 2008. The community’s mailing address, once Fields, has been changed to Merryville. However, in a location that once served as a post office, an after-school stop for kids, a grocery store and a community news source, Russell and Tonya Havens operate Havens General Store. It’s an old-fashioned, one-stop shopping and dining experience. Of course, this one-stop shopping location is stocked differently from the chain stores in heavily populated areas. At Havens General Store, shiners and worms are always available. Deer corn is offered during hunting season. PVC joints and other handy hardware items are stacked in the back of the store. Though it goes fast, there’s also cane syrup, jelly and other preserves, including mayhaw; fresh-ground corn meal; and farm-fresh produce. Local honey — from Bearhead — is sought after as a sweetener and also as a remedy for allergy symptoms. “We still serve free coffee,” said Tonya Havens. “In the mornings, local men gather here and solve the world’s problems,” she added, grinning. Some do their best problem-solving over tomato gravy and biscuits, one of the breakfast menu items. But it’s OK to just sit and sip a cup of coffee inside at a table, on the deck in a rocking chair or in the glider at the front of the store. Russell came up with the hamburger Havens General Store customers rave about. It’s the most-ordered item on the menu — a half-pound of Black Angus beef seasoned a day beforehand and cooked to order. One day the Havenses served 80 burgers in a restaurant located in a community of about 400 people. “Customers aren’t just from Fields,” Tonya said. “People drive here from as far as Sulphur and Orange.” Customers are also from Merryville, Singer, DeQuincy and Starks. On Friday night, homemade pies are added to the menu, which features mainly short-order type cooking. Menu items ordered for this food review were the fried catfish dinner, deer sausage on a bun with potato chips and a BLT with fries. The three filets of catfish were dredged in mostly cornmeal (the way it should be) and served with hush puppies, fries, a few dill pickles and a couple of slices of onion: Traditional, simple, delicious and filling. The cook knew what he was doing. All sandwiches, including the deer or pork sausage on a bun, are dressed to order and served with chips, fries, potato tots, onion rings or fried okra. Get grilled squash in season. The BLT was served on perfectly toasted, thick-sliced white bread. Bacon was also thick sliced. It was stacked with just the right amount of bacon, lettuce and tomato. The sandwich didn’t fall apart. Havens General Store food isn’t fancy. And it’s not diet fare. But it’s good food, prepared in a way that won’t disappoint — and the prices can’t be beat. The meal for three, including three fountain drinks, — with free refills — was $21.46 before tax and tip. If there is another place to get a satisfying bite to eat for the price, find a hand-crocheted baby dress with matching hat and booties, lye soap and old ammo boxes, I don’t know about it. Menu prices range from $4 to $7.50. The burger is $5.50. Add a side for $1. Hot Box, ready-to-go foods and Hunt Brothers Pizza are also available. Havens General Store is across from the old school, where La. 389 and La. 109 make a “Y.” It’s south of Merryville and north of DeQuincy and Starks. The address is 6598 La. 109. Hours are 7 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Friday. The place is open until 7 p.m. on Saturday. Sunday hours are 7 a.m.-2 p.m.
  • McNeese spring 2017 honor graduates
    Thirty-six McNeese State University students received the summa cum laude (3.9-4) designation during recent spring commencement ceremonies at Burton Coliseum. Eight students were recognized for earning a 4 grade-point average throughout their college careers: Katja Woelfl, Ellhofen, Germany, general business administration; Tiffany Hope Bohannon, Kinder, general business administration; Melissa L. Snider, psychology, Lake Charles; Kristen R. Smith, Sulphur, foreign languages; Bettina Brulhart, Zurich, Switzerland, mass communication; Brandon W. Soileau, Ville Platte, health and human performance; Amy Lien Nguyen, engineering, Vinton; and Alexandra E. Widcamp, Westlake, health and human performance. The other honor students recognized: Summa cum laude: Moulero Ridwane Akobi, Kilibo, Benin; Mariah KaLee Allen, Allison C. Rogers, Bossier City; Katherine K. Kittrell, DeRidder; Caleb M. Ardizzone, Caitlin D. Burcham, Lindsey Nikole Caldwell, Madison T. Edwards, Cynthia L. Hayes, Ava Lynn LeBlanc, Haider Nisar Mir, Rosemary Noelle Prejean, Sajeela Farjaad Siddiq, Cara Michelle Taylor, Jackson Ray Wilson, Lake Charles; Christian Jacob Harrington, Oakdale; Crystal J. Leday, Opelousas; Stephen L. Carrier, Chelsea Lynn Comeaux, Daniel P. Gary, Carla Denise Hutchison, Sulphur; Trent F. Parker, Corpus Christi, Texas; Annie Lauren Bravenec, Katy, Texas; Jamie Leigh Beaulieu, Orangefield, Texas; Nghia Trong Dinh, Vung Tau, Vietnam; Allyson K. Soileau, Ville Platte; Abby Marie Fontenot, Washington; and Kaley Nicole Guillott, Westlake. Magna cum laude (3.7-3.89): Donna Rae Walker, Basile; Alison Ann Smegal, Oshawa, Canada; Matthew Caleb Gauthier, Carencro; Allison Rachelle Schexnayder, Church Point; Jessica Lauren Porterfield, DeRidder; Danda M. Guidry, Evangeline; Mable N. Spikes, Fenton; Trenton C. Vallo, Justin Patrick Zaunbrecher, Gueydan; Gabrielle E. Redlich, Hathaway; Matthew A. Duplantis, Houma; Kendee Lynn Owen Kreider, Idaho Falls, Idaho; Jenna Eileen LeJeune Zaunbrecher, Iota; Courtney Beth Broussard, Katelin Rose Wilder, Jennings; Ashley L. Gotreaux, Isiah M. Victorian, Lacassine; Natalie Renee Bruno, Lafayette; Macy D. Istre, Lake Arthur; Callie Nicole Anderson, Nadine M. Chaisson, Adam Christopher Chase, Madison Taylor Claudel, Emily E. Cormier, Gabriele G. Fournerat, Shyla L. Gordon, Isaac P. Guillory, Matthew W. Hebert, Kylie Danee’ Bostick Herrington, Audree Bess LeBleu, Cameron D. Smith, Nathanael Wade Soileau, Michael Dakota Sonntag, Lake Charles; Karleena Ann Langenfeld, Grand Rapids, Mich.; Jane L. Owen Clark, Okemos, Mich.; Olivia Ann Karam, Kylie Elise Smith, Oberlin; Allison Beth Burleigh Johnson, Ragley; Ciara Shantel Bussell, Starks; Hailey Marie Borel, Rachel N. Palermo, Kathryn Mikail Petry, Barrett Layne Tinker, Sulphur; Taylor S. Moore, Fred, Texas; Stephanie Brooke Dusek, Plano, Texas; Luke Elliot Alphonso, San Antonio, Texas; Colton M. Shields, Terrell, Texas; Chrysta Stuart, Diego Martin, Trinidad and Tobago; Romina Pacheco, Bouvar City, Venezuela; Annie Auriel Edward, Camron B. Fontenot, Ville Platte; Lindsay Elise Vincent, Vinton; Gabrielle Grace Watkins Thibodeaux, Welsh; and Rachel Erin Hebert, Westlake. Cum laude (3.5-3.69): Kayne Micheal Hargrave, Abbeville; Amanda M. Foster, Christian Slayter Jones, Alexandria; Randi Mischel Beltz, Ama; Quazi Atquiya Fannana Maisha, Dhaka, Bangladesh; Natalie Estelle Smith, Belle Chasse; Mary Cazalot Brown, Broussard; Nicholas E. Benoit, Trakalyn Brieon Goodley, Crowley; Callie Michelle Downs, DeRidder; Jessica D. Taylor, Downsville; Katelyn Babineaux Saltzman, Grand Lake; Laney N. Domingue, Gueydan; Vivien Borbely, Tiszavasvari, Hungary; Kara M. Rockey, Oak Lawn, Ill.; Caitlyn Christine Compton, Katelyn Renee Duhon, Trent W. Hargrave, Terry Lam Lu, Maggie Noel Mott, Ty Pearce Newcomb, Jennings; Layni Brooke Allemand, Sydney Tyler Thomas, Kinder; Aungelina Louise Chapman, Cody Michael Fontenot, Hunter Ford, Jordan L. Fuselier, Hannah Elise Goodwin, Morgan Arielle Hawkins, Katelyn E. Hoffpauir, Molly B. Jones, Collin Ray Kober, CamBridge Phillip Jerome Matthews, Michael Logan Monroe, Lindsey Allison Rivet, Yassara Shaikh, Christopher L. Sims, Hannah Kathryn Smith, Shelby Lauren Spann, Colleen M. Stratton, Elise Ann Thibodeaux, Alvin John Trahan, Gabriella Paige Trahan, Truc Linh T. Truong, Lake Charles; Monett Pitre Houston, LeBlanc; Whitney Nicole Ross, Lena; Spencer Floyd Albert, Luling; Joshua E. Smith, New Orleans; Vanessa Alexandra Bentley, Roseburg, Ore.; Joshua Michael Blanchet, Picayune, Miss.; Mylinda Desselle, Pineville; Dustin L. Thompson, Rosepine; Taylor B. Ashworth, Starks; Brandon Todd Brewer, Michael Aaron Farrar, Megan Michelle Hebert, Caleb D. Olbrych, Miles Arthur Sebastian Reynolds, April Rachel Henry Stone, Terran Ann Sweeney, Katelyn Elise Thompson, Sulphur; Courtney Dawn McKinney, Bridge City, Texas; Rakira L. Turner, Huntsville, Texas; Elijah Ray Cutler, Lufkin, Texas; Donovan Caleb Barfield, Nederland, Texas; Adison D. Giambrone, Richmond, Texas; Krupa Kanti Jiminez, Vidor, Texas; Victoria F. Bertrand, Thornwell; Oliver James, Sunderland, United Kingdom; and Jase D. Johnson, Westlake.
  • Whoa, Nelly: Nelson HR helps Cowboys advance
    SUGAR LAND, Texas — No. 1 McNeese State led most of its first-round Southland Conference Tournament baseball game against No. 8 Lamar, but the Cowboys found themselves in a bit of a scare as the Cardinals put the tying run on first base with one out in the top of the ninth. Then closing pitcher Collin Kober came in, and all of McNeese’s fears disappeared. “We can take a big breath when (Kober) comes in,” said Cowboys catcher Dustin Duhon. “He takes a lot of pressure off of everybody.” Kober proceeded to strike out the next two batters and earn the save in a 7-5 victory for the Cowboys, who enter the winners’ side of the bracket. The save marked Kober’s ninth of the season. He’s allowed nine runs in 222⁄3 innings pitched. “It’s my job,” Kober said. “I’ve been doing it for the past three years. That’s what my teammates look up to me to do. They look for me to get the job done whenever things are tough.” Despite struggling on the mound, the Cowboys (37-18) tallied 11 hits and kept the Cardinals (33-24) just out of reach to earn the all-important first-round win. “There was nothing pretty about what we did today other than the fact that we won,” said McNeese head coach Justin Hill. “We walked more guys (nine) than we have all year, but it didn’t really matter. It was a gutsy performance by everybody. We just found a way to do it.” Duhon got things started in the first inning with a home run that gave McNeese its first lead of the game. Austin Nelson followed that in the second inning when he blasted a homer over the batter’s eye in center field. Nelson finished 1-for-2 with three runs. “There are so many great stories with Austin (Nelson) and what he means to our team,” Hill said. “That’s icing on the cake when he does well.” The Cowboys remained hot throughout as all but two members of the starting lineup recorded at least one hit. Ricky Ramirez gave the Cowboys a 6-3 lead in the sixth inning with a two-RBI single that gave the Cowboys some breathing room. But Lamar never let McNeese get comfortable, and the Cardinals scored a run in each of the final two innings to cut the Cowboys’ lead to 7-5. “They kept going,” Hill said of the Cardinals. “I was really impressed. … They took some really tough pitches, and they really grinded our pitchers down a little bit.” Nelson left the game in an uncharacteristically short afternoon in which he gave up three runs on for hits in 41⁄3 innings. From there Grant Anderson took over, giving up a run and two hits in 22⁄3 innings. “I don’t know the last time Grant Anderson has ever had four walks and no strikeouts in a game,” Hill said. “(The Cardinals) decided that’s what they were going to do, and they had a great game plan today.” The Cowboys, who took three of four meetings with the Cardinals, will return to Constellation Field at 7 p.m. today for a second-round game against the winner of Wednesday night’s game between No. 4 Houston Baptist (26-20) and No. 5 Central Arkansas (29-23). Lamar will play the loser in an elimination game at noon. McNeese swept Central Arkansas in Conway, Arkansas, in March. The Cowboys did not meet HBU in the regular season. Hill said McNeese’s normal No. 2 pitcher Rhett Deaton will not pitch due to an undisclosed injury. He said who steps on the mound will likely depend on who the Cowboys play.
  • No raise for low-wage workers: Struggling families on losing end of Senate committee’s vote
    BATON ROUGE — Legislation that would have raised the state minimum wage by $1.25 per hour by 2019 stalled in a Senate committee Wednesday. A motion to report Senate Bill 153, by Sen. Troy Carter, D-New Orleans, favorably failed with a 3-7 vote by the Senate Finance Committee. The vote was split along party lines, with GOP senators opposing it and Democrats supporting it. Similar legislation stalled in last year’s session. The measure would have raised the minimum wage from $7.25 per hour to $8 by Jan. 1 and by 50 cents more by Jan. 1, 2019. Carter said the raise would help working poor families who are struggling to make ends meet. The last wage increase was in 2009. “We’ve got to help them,” Carter said. “We all represent working poor.” Several Republicans on the committee argued that raising the minimum wage would lead to jobs lost as employers would be forced to cut expenses. Democrats said residents need to earn more money to afford basic costs of living. Sen. Gregory Tarver, D-Shreveport, said he didn’t understand how lawmakers could oppose raising the minimum wage but could support giving tax breaks to businesses. Sen. Conrad Appel, R-Metairie, said the state should focus on improving its economy, which would lead to a rise in overall income. He said the government should not mandate what wage businesses should pay its employees. Carter disagreed, saying the state still had to increase living expenses when the economy was in good shape. Sen. Jack Donahue, R-Mandeville, said those making minimum wage can take advantage of educational and training programs that can help them find higher-paying jobs. “People can help themselves,” he said. Sen. Wesley Bishop, D-New Orleans, said that increasing the minimum wage would boost the quality of life for low-income residents. “There is something fundamentally wrong when a minimum wage hotel worker can’t afford to sleep in the same bed they made last night,” he said. Sen. Sharon Hewitt, R-Slidell, said businesses should choose what they pay employees. She said industries like restaurants would lose employees if the wage is increased because they will be forced to cut costs. Jan Moller, executive director of the Louisiana Budget Project, said the state “struggles with poverty,” with most living in working households. He mentioned the United Way’s most recent ALICE report, which showed 42 percent of residents living in poverty or right above poverty but struggling to afford basic expenses. “The best way to help those households is to raise the minimum wage,” Moller said. Moller said the wage increase would pump $180 million into the economy as people spend additional earned money at other businesses. Jim Patterson, vice president of the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry, said increasing the minimum wage would cause economic consequences and would cancel out any advantages for low-income families. Sen. Ronnie Johns, R-Sulphur, opposed the legislation.
  • Man sentenced to 15 years in stabbing
    A 41-year-old Lake Charles man convicted April 26 of attempted second-degree murder was sentenced to 15 years in prison without parole Wednesday in state district court. Dwayne A. Sylvester Sr. was convicted of stabbing Gerald Carter on Feb. 18 at the Easy Aces Casino, 1825 I-10 Service Road. Video surveillance showed Sylvester taking out a knife and stabbing Carter, who was later treated for wounds to his neck and torso. “I made a mistake,” Sylvester said Wednesday after apologizing to his family and friends. Sentencing was slated for Monday. But it was delayed to Wednesday after Davis heard a motion that day by defense attorney Emily Wagner for a new trial. Wagner said Sylvester had been prevented from fully exploring the history between him and Carter and was therefore unable to fully defend himself. Judge Clayton Davis denied the motion. Prosecutor Hope Buford also filed a bill of information Monday charging Sylvester as a habitual offender. A hearing will be Aug. 24.
  • Pence pitches Trump's budget during Baton Rouge visit
    BATON ROUGE — Vice President Mike Pence visited Louisiana on Wednesday for the third time since August, meeting privately with a group of small-business owners before delivering a brief speech in front of about 200 people at an industrial warehouse. The trip came on the heels of the release of President Donald Trump’s 2018 budget proposal, which aims to balance the federal budget and reduce the deficit over the next decade by doing away with the Affordable Care Act and slashing dozens of programs, many of which are dedicated to research, arts and social welfare. Meanwhile, the proposal seeks dramatic funding increases for defense, immigration and veterans services, as well as $200 billion toward infrastructure improvements over the next 10 years. Pence hailed it as the beginning of better days for Louisiana’s stifled economy. He said a key component of the plan would be the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. “As Louisiana knows, one of the most important things we need to do to create jobs and restore boundless opportunity in America is to repeal and replace Obamacare,” Pence said. Earlier on Wednesday, he said, he heard story after story from Louisiana small-business owners about how the ACA hurt them. “Here in Louisiana, Obamacare premiums have spiked by nearly 125 percent,” Pence said. “The average plan here in the Pelican State costs more than $3,500 more than it did just a few short years ago.” With Trump at the helm, he said, the “Obamacare nightmare is about to end.” Pence also touched on Trump’s plan to cut the business tax from 35 percent to 15 percent, saying it would allow Louisiana businesses to compete internationally. “(Trump’s) going to put more money in your pockets, keep it out of the hands of wasteful bureaucrats in Washington, D.C.” He called it “the most significant tax cut since the days of Ronald Reagan and one of the largest tax cuts in American history.” Under the budget plan, Louisiana’s roads and bridges will get the improvements they need with help from federal dollars, he said. Defense, too, would see a dramatic funding spike of 10.1 percent, which he called “one of the largest increases in defense spending since the days of President Ronald Reagan.” The budget also sets aside funding for a border wall, one of the cornerstones of Trump’s campaign. “In the budget we just proposed, President Donald Trump is requesting the resources we’ll need to build a wall,” he said, prompting a round of applause. Pence said illegal crossings at the nation’s southern border are down more than 70 percent since Jan. 1. He also praised the efforts already in effect to identify people in the country illegally. “Even as we speak, this administration, working with local law enforcement, are taking gang members, drug dealers and criminal illegal aliens off the streets of Louisiana and off the streets of America,” Pence said. The budget assumes 3 percent economic growth over the next few years, up from 1.6 last year, which critics say is optimistic at best. But Trump stood by the plan, he said. No matter the mood in Washington, or what position the media take, Pence said, he and Trump will not lose sight of their mission. “President Trump and I will never stop fighting for the issues that matter most to the American people — good jobs, safe streets, national security and a boundless American future.”
  • Vote delayed in hopes of passing gas tax hike
    BATON ROUGE — Citing a lack of support, one House lawmaker decided on Wednesday to shelve legislation that would increase the state’s 20-cent gasoline tax until next week. As House lawmakers worked late into the evening, Rep. Steven Carter, R-Baton Rouge, returned House Bill 632 to the calendar until Wednesday, May 31. The measure lacks the votes needed for House approval, but Carter said he wants to continue discussion on the measure. “I know it’s a tough vote; this is just too important,” he said.  The measure calls for an additional 17-cent tax on gasoline, diesel fuel and other special fuels. It would generate $269.7 million this year and more than $500 million in the 2018-2019 fiscal year.  The levy would be adjusted every four years based on the four-year average of the Consumer Price Index, starting in the 2021 fiscal year. Carter mentioned the backlog of road and bridge projects that could be funded with the tax increase. He also spoke of similar bills introduced during earlier sessions that went nowhere. “This is a great opportunity for us, but if nothing is done, we will kick the can down the road four more years,” Carter said. He mentioned the 2007 collapse of the U.S. 135 Mississippi River bridge in Minneapolis that killed 13 and injured 145. He said he wasn’t trying to revert to “scare tactics” to garner support for the bill, but acknowledged that some roads and bridges in Louisiana are in dire need of repair. Tax changes Lawmakers voted 83-13 in favor of H.B. 353, by Rep. Julie Stokes, R-Kenner, sending it to the Senate. The measure is a constitutional amendment to enact a flat 3.95 percent flat tax on personal income greater than $12,500 for single filers and $25,000 for joint filers.  There would not be a deduction for federal income taxes paid, and the excess itemized deduction would be modified. A companion bill, H.B. 501, was also approved with an 85-13 vote. The measure was amended to include a $1,000 exemption for a taxpayer who is blind, deaf or has an intellectual disability. The deduction would also apply to each dependent allowed, in determining federal income tax liability, who is blind, deaf or intellectually disabled. Rep. Frank Howard, R-Many, was the only Southwest Louisiana lawmaker to oppose both bills.
  • Tax burden isn't real problem
    An anti-tax movement appears to be sweeping the country, and Louisiana taxpayers are among the growing numbers who are rejecting taxes for schools, recreation and other important government services. Louisiana legislators are feeling the heat and continuing to oppose necessary funding for higher education, health care and the state’s roads, bridges and other forms of transportation. However, lawmakers are a major part of the problem. More on that later. To listen to the critics, one would assume Louisiana citizens are burdened with high taxes. Are we? Tax Foundation, one of the nation’s most respected groups when it comes to tax policy, laid out the real story in its March 13 “Facts and Figures 2017: How Does Your State Compare?” The organization’s first of many tables talks about Tax Freedom Day, which represents how long Americans as a whole have to work in order to pay the nation’s tax burden. Only taxpayers in Mississippi (April 5) and Tennessee (April 6) reach that date earlier than those in Louisiana (April 7). Connecticut doesn’t get there until May 21, which puts it in the No. 50 position. The latest figures available from fiscal year 2012 show that Louisiana has the 45th lowest state and local tax burden as a percentage of income in the country, which means only five other states are lower. The Louisiana per capita (per person) tax burden was $2,950 or 7.6 percent of income. New York is No. 1 with a state and local tax burden of $6,993, which is 12.7 percent of income. Louisiana collected $2,081 in state taxes per person in 2015, ranking it in 39th place. North Dakota was in first place with state collections totaling $7,583. State and local tax collections in Louisiana in 2014 totaled $3,889 for 31st place. North Dakota was first with $9,746 in collections. Critics complain about the size of Louisiana’s budget, but it contains billions in federal dollars. Federal aid received by Louisiana in 2014 represented 40.1 percent of the state’s general revenue, which put it in second place nationally. Mississippi was in first place, receiving 40.9 percent of its general revenue in federal aid. North Dakota was in 50th position, receiving only 16.8 percent in federal aid. Louisiana doesn’t have a state property tax, but local governments do. Meanwhile, Texas got 40.4 percent of its state and local revenues from property taxes. New Hampshire was first with 66.1 percent of its state and local revenue from property taxes. Corporations in Louisiana insist they pay more than their fair share of taxes, but the numbers say otherwise. The difference is readily apparent when looking at individual and corporate state income taxes. In 2015, individual income taxes per person in Louisiana were $639, putting the state in 39th position. Connecticut was in first place at $2,279. Corporate income taxes in Louisiana were $54 per capita for 43rd place. New Hampshire was in first place at $443 per person. Louisiana does have the highest state and local sales tax rate at 9.98 percent, followed by Tennessee, 9.46; Arkansas, 9.30; Alabama, 9.01, and Washington State, 8.92. If Louisiana’s temporary 1 percent increase goes off the books July 1, 2018, the 8.98 percent tax would put the state in fifth place. All states are paying an 18.4-cents-per-gallon federal tax on gasoline. Louisiana’s 20-cent-per-gallon state tax has the state in 42nd place. Arkansas is 40th at 21.5 cents; Texas is 43rd at 20 cents and Mississippi 46th at 18.79 cents. Pennsylvania has the highest state gasoline tax at 58.2 cents, followed by Washington State, 49.4 cents; Hawaii, 44.4 cents, New York, 43.9 cents, and Michigan, 40.4 cents. Hawaii has the lowest tax at 12.6 cents for 50th place. In 2014, Louisiana was 45th in state and local road spending, with only Wyoming, Vermont, South Dakota, North Dakota and Alaska spending less. Texas has an enviable road construction program, but it has gasoline and license taxes, tolls and user fees and user taxes to fund road spending. The numbers tell the real story. Louisiana citizens aren’t overtaxed. The truth is they wouldn’t have to pay higher taxes if the state weren’t giving away $7 billion a year in tax breaks of all kinds. Additional revenues are dedicated to special interests and isn’t available for spending on vital government services. Efforts to eliminate some of those tax breaks or dedications that haven’t been evaluated in decades are failing miserably at the current session of the Legislature. Everyone is protecting his own pot of money with help from more lobbyists than you can count. Consider what happened this week. A House committee killed a Senate-approved bill that took a sales tax break away for the sale of off-road vehicles, airboats, pirogues and other items sold during the first weekend in September. Why should those be tax-exempt when citizens are paying sales taxes on automobiles and other big-ticket items? A majority of legislators refuses to accept the fact the state’s tax system is extremely unfair and in serious need of reform. The taxpayers back home are the real victims because too many of their lawmakers are looking out for themselves and special interests first. Jim Beam, the retired editor of the American Press, has covered people and politics for more than five decades. Contact him at 337-515-8871 or jbeam@americanpress.com.
  • Your Mail 5-25: Saluting EMTs; don't fry this Friday
    Special days this week honor EMTs; highlight dangers of too much sun       
  • Manchester, Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan -- Our View
    In global war against terrorists, citizens are on the front lines       
  • SporTran holding meetings to prepare riders for changes
    Drastic changes are coming to SporTran this fall.  So the bus service is holding community meetings to educate riders.
  • Mainieri records 500th win as Tigers defeat Missouri
    HOOVER, Ala.       
  • Mainieri records 500th win as Tigers defeat Missouri
    HOOVER, Ala.       
  • Police seek driver who fled, wrecked car then bailed
    Shreveport police are looking for the driver who bailed when a car officers were pursuing crashed into another vehicle.
  • Trump to Pope Francis at the Vatican: 'We can use peace'
    Photos taken before the meeting showed Trump smiling broadly, while the pope appeared stern.       
  • Trump to Pope Francis at the Vatican: 'We can use peace'
    Photos taken before the meeting showed Trump smiling broadly, while the pope appeared stern.       
  • Alton Sterling’s family seeks officers’ immediate dismissal
    NEW ORLEANS — The family of Alton Sterling is demanding the immediate firing of the two officers involved in the man’s death.       
  • Alton Sterling’s family seeks officers’ immediate dismissal
    NEW ORLEANS — The family of Alton Sterling is demanding the immediate firing of the two officers involved in the man’s death.       
  • Marksville's Day signs with LC track and field
    MARKSVILLE — Just weeks after finishing well at the LHSAA state track and field meet, Marksville senior Nora Day was ready for her next move.       
  • Police ID suspect in shooting
    Shreveport police have identified a suspect in a shooting in the western part of the city that sent a man to a hospital with three gunshot wounds to his chest.
  • Almost 2 dozen learning special response skills in SWAT class
    These law officers are being prepared for a host of possible crisis scenarios
  • LC president recognized by alma mater
    Louisiana College President Rick Brewer's alma mater, Charleston Sothern University, honored him as distinguished alumnus of the year earlier this month.       
  • LC president recognized by alma mater
    Louisiana College President Rick Brewer's alma mater, Charleston Sothern University, honored him as distinguished alumnus of the year earlier this month.       
  • Alexandria shoplifting suspect faces attempted murder charge
    A man who allegedly stole a hat from a store now faces an attempted murder charge after a scuffle with a police officer outside the Alexandria Mall.       
  • Alexandria shoplifting suspect faces attempted murder charge
    A man who allegedly stole a hat from a store now faces an attempted murder charge after a scuffle with a police officer outside the Alexandria Mall.       
  • Experts offer tips to help your family deal with terror attacks
    Experts suggest ways to talk with your children about terror attacks like Manchester and suggest that parents use those talks to come up with a family action plan should disaster strike at a crowded event.
  • St. Francis chaplain offers spiritual healing on daily rounds
    Charles Headrick makes his daily rounds, visiting patients to pray with them, as a chaplain at St. Francis in Monroe.       
  • SWAR officer's family seeks help keeping his killer in jail
    Forty years ago, a Texarkana, Ark., police officer was killed in the line of duty. Now his family is asking for your help keeping the man responsible for his death behind bars.
  • Why it takes women longer to pay off student loans
    More debt and lower incomes make for a lose-lose situation.       
  • Why it takes women longer to pay off student loans
    More debt and lower incomes make for a lose-lose situation.       
  • Gov. Edwards: Minimum wage failure attacks family values
    Sen. Troy Carter, D-New Orleans said he'll try again next year.       
  • Gov. Edwards: Minimum wage failure attacks family values
    Sen. Troy Carter, D-New Orleans said he'll try again next year.       
  • Missing Texarkana, TX, man found in South Louisiana
    A man missing from Texarkana, Texas, has been found in South Louisiana, authorities say.
  • SPD: Man shot by woman claiming self-defense has died
    A man has died after being shot Tuesday by a woman who told police she did it in self-defense.
  • Sen. Carter on minimum wage: Fight isn't over
    Sen. Troy Carter, D-New Orleans, said he will keep bringing back his bill to raise the minimum wage in Louisiana every year "until we do what's right for the people." The Senate Finance Committee killed his bill Wednesday.       
  • Sen. Carter on minimum wage: Fight isn't over
    Sen. Troy Carter, D-New Orleans, said he will keep bringing back his bill to raise the minimum wage in Louisiana every year "until we do what's right for the people." The Senate Finance Committee killed his bill Wednesday.       
  • KSLA News 12 Investigates: Transparency behind the badge
    Are law enforcement agencies forthcoming with public records? KSLA News 12 Investigates put 26 to the test and, in some instances, found things are not so transparent behind the badge.
  • Senate committee kills La. minimum wage bill with party-line vote
    With a party-line vote, a Senate panel killed a bill Wednesday increasing the minimum wage in Louisiana.
  • Central Louisiana mugshots, week of May 22, 2017
    Mugshots received from Central Louisiana law enforcement agencies for the week of May 22, 2017. All those pictured are innocent until proven guilty.       
  • Central Louisiana mugshots, week of May 22, 2017
    Mugshots received from Central Louisiana law enforcement agencies for the week of May 22, 2017. All those pictured are innocent until proven guilty.       
  • Group wants to reopen Boys & Girls Club
    Curtis Lewis and the Redefined Project are spearheading efforts to bring back the Boys & Girls Club's programs and services for kids and teenagers in Alexandria.       
  • Group wants to reopen Boys & Girls Club
    Curtis Lewis and the Redefined Project are spearheading efforts to bring back the Boys & Girls Club's programs and services for kids and teenagers in Alexandria.       
  • Bossier might lengthen hours at its branch library in Haughton
    Bossier Library Board of Control members will be asked Thursday to consider expanding operating hours at Bossier Parish Library System's branch in Haughton. Today is the last day for people to take part in an online poll.
  • Late scratch: LSU pitcher Peterson suspended 1 game
    LSU pitcher Todd Peterson was to start SEC Tourney opener Wednesday, but he's been suspended for violating team rules.       
  • Late scratch: LSU pitcher Peterson suspended 1 game
    LSU pitcher Todd Peterson was to start SEC Tourney opener Wednesday, but he's been suspended for violating team rules.       
  • Bill to give equal domestic abuse protection to same-sex couples fails in Senate
    The state’s domestic abuse laws will continue to exclude same-sex couples after a bill to extend the law’s protections failed in a 17-14 Senate vote. But the measure may not be dead.       
  • Bill to give equal domestic abuse protection to same-sex couples fails in Senate
    The state’s domestic abuse laws will continue to exclude same-sex couples after a bill to extend the law’s protections failed in a 17-14 Senate vote. But the measure may not be dead.       
  • Proposed film tax credit raises hopes for comeback in Shreveport-Bossier film industry
    A revamp of Louisiana's film tax credit is said to be putting some stability back in the Shreveport-Bossier film industry.
  • Jonathan Vilma, Carl Nicks to enter Saints Hall of Fame
    Two players on Saints’ 2009 Super Bowl championship squad will join team’s Hall of Fame.       
  • SPD investigating mid-morning Queensborough shooting
    At least one person has been sent to a hospital after a reported shooting this morning.
  • Lincoln Parish sales tax collections ‘flat’
    Staff Report Sales tax collections in Lincoln Parish posted an approximate 6.3 percent gain from the first quarter of 2016 to the first quarter of 2017. But despite the slight rise, collections are technically flat, Sales Tax Administrator Denise Griggs said Tuesday. Parishwide collections for January through April, 2016 hit slightly more than $11 million, compared to this year’s $11.7 million, figures given the Lincoln Parish Sales and Use Tax Commission show. Full text of this article is available to subscribers only. Login if you are already a subscriber. If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe to the online version here. read more
  • Bringing awareness to domestic abuse victims
    Heather Small Hawley Submitted photos - Shelton Foster, left, and Michael Wall, right, attempt to break the Guinness World Record for longest motorcycle ride with no hands. Wall, who is a Ruston native, and Foster decided to do the attempt in order to bring awareness to the Domestic Abuse Resistance Team. The longest non-stop motorcycle ride without touching the handlebars with the hands is 137.94 miles and was achieved by Marcello Sarandrea, of Italy, riding a Yamaha Tricker 250 motorcycle, in Rome, Italy, on March 6, 2015. Sarandrea took three hours and 10 minutes to break the record on a 1,234-meter circuit where he did 180 laps, according to Guinness World Records. A little more than two years later, on May 9, Michael Wall, a Ruston native and law enforcement officer, and Shelton Foster Jr., of Dry Prong, also a law enforcement officer, set out to break that record. Full text of this article is available to subscribers only. Login if you are already a subscriber. If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe to the online version here. read more
  • Alexandria man charged in fatal shooting
    An 18-year-old Alexandria resident has been charged in a fatal shooting reported to police just after midnight Saturday.       
  • Alexandria man charged in fatal shooting
    An 18-year-old Alexandria resident has been charged in a fatal shooting reported to police just after midnight Saturday.       
  • Kirbyville High School principal resigns, then shoots, kills self in parking lot
    Following his resignation Tuesday afternoon, the principal of Kirbyville High School walked out his truck, where he apparently shot and killed himself, according to police.
  • Manchester police: 'This is a network we are investigating'
    Police made three more arrests and said they were investigating a "network" as the investigation intensified into the suicide bombing at a pop concert that killed 22 people and wounded scores more.       
  • Manchester police: 'This is a network we are investigating'
    Police made three more arrests and said they were investigating a "network" as the investigation intensified into the suicide bombing at a pop concert that killed 22 people and wounded scores more.       
  • Bill could lead to life in prison for some juveniles
    A proposed change to Louisiana law that would allow district attorneys to seek juvenile life without parole for first-degree murder, but not murder in the second-degree, passed the Louisiana House Tuesday.       
  • Added agony: Justice is haphazard after kids’ gun deaths
    Amy Pittman learned on her first day in jail to bottle up her grief.       
  • Police ID man arrested after gunman invaded hotel room
    A man who reportedly barricaded himself in a Texarkana, Ark., hotel room now is in jail on five felony charges.
  • House approves bill to raise bar on TOPS
    The GPA requirement for TOPS would increase from 2.5 to 2.75 in four years.       
  • Five returning Central Louisiana quarterbacks to watch
    Defense wins championships, but it generally takes good quarterback play to get a team to the next level.       
  • 12 Investigates: Half of SPD officers fired since 2014 reinstated
    Within the past three years, half of the Shreveport police officers who were fired got their jobs back. One officer even was fired twice, only to be reinstated both times. 
  • Lanard Fournette arrested for fake ID, leaving scene
    LSU tailback Lanard Fournette, younger brother of Leonard Fournette, was arrested Monday for using fake ID in a casino.       
  • Arrest made in discovery of opium poppy plants in Catawba County
    The Catawba County Sheriff's Office says the plants were found off Poultry Lane near Claremont.
  • Beau On Base: SEC Tournament to be stress free for LSU
    Busy week as Tigers win SEC, prepare for SEC Tournament, name 4th starter, and Lange and Deichmann make 1st team All-SEC       
  • No pressure on LSU at SEC Tournament
    SEC champ Tigers can just have fun in Hoover       
  • LSU finishing in "Fever Pitch," but it was never cold
    LSU won 11 of its last 12 SEC games to win a share of the title, but it also won it because it survived earlier.       
  • California to D.C: Veterans ride cross-country to remember, heal
          
  • Orgeron has done the Canada-Aranda math, and it adds up
    It apprears new LSU football coach Ed Orgeron is going to ride his expert coordinators into the sunset.       
  • Tigers capture 17th SEC baseball championship
    STARKVILLE, Miss. — Fifth-ranked LSU won its 17th Southeastern Conference championship Saturday night with an 11-7 victory over ninth-ranked Mississippi State at Dudy Noble Field.       
  • Men Who Cook & Men Who Mix
          
  • Men Who Cook & Men Who Mix
          
  • Gafford: LHSAA split had good, bad moments
    Now that the 2016-17 high school sports year is completely over, there is one thing to say about it in general.       
  • Canada, Aranda talk football on Tiger Tour
    Coordinators on big screen at LSU last week       
  • LSU baseball captures 19th SEC West championship
    STARKVILLE, Miss. — Senior left-hander Jared Poché earned his ninth win of the season Friday night, and four LSU players collected at least two RBI to lead the Tigers to an 11-5 win over No.9 Mississippi State at Dudy Noble Field.       
  • Tunica-Biloxi Education Day
          
  • Tunica-Biloxi Education Day
          
  • Column: LSU takes 1-0 lead in new era of State rivalry
    Curious hire of Andy Cannizaro at Miss. St. by Mainieri rival Cohen thickens the voluminous LSU-Mississippi State plot       
  • LSU takes opening game over MSU
    Junior right-hander Alex Lange limited ninth-ranked Mississippi State to one run in seven innings Thursday night to lead No. 5 LSU to a 3-1 victory at Dudy Noble Field.       
  • "Mother Blues" sings the blues at AMoA
          
  • "Mother Blues" sings the blues at AMoA
          
  • LC gets trio of local athletes
    Louisiana College has been busy on the recruiting trail as of late.       
  • LSUA fends off Drovers to return to NAIA World Series
    What a difference a year makes.       
  • LSUA tennis advances to NAIA quarterfinals for first time
    No. 9 LSUA rallied in singles action to stun No. 8 Northwestern Ohio, defeating the Racers 5-3 Wednesday afternoon, to clinch a spot in the NAIA National Championship Tournament quarterfinals for the first time in the program’s three-year history.       
  • La.Tech baseball surging down the stretch
    The story behind Tech's resurrgence during the past six weeks       
  • Sam Burns, LSU capture regional victories
    Tigers collect first regional victory in program history; head to NCAA Championships in Chicago       
  • SEC titles, national seeds all at stake in Stark-Vegas
    LSU can win the SEC and enhance its chances for a national seed beginning Thursday night at Mississippi State       
  • Paul Mainieri previews Miss. St. series
    Pitching to be the thing as usual       
  • 2017 Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics
          
  • 2017 Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics
          
  • Surprising cause of death in teen boating accident creates 'Raven's Rule'
    16-year-old Raven Little-White died in August, after a boating accident on Lake Waccamaw. The medical examiner’s report lists “drowning” as the probable cause of death, but a toxicology report that came back later revealed Raven had actually succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Northwestern State to honor seniors this weekend
    The Demons open their final Southland Conference series of the season against New Orleans on Thursday.       
  • Alex Lange at top of his game
    Ace coming off back-to-back complete games       
  • LSUA takes on USAO
          
  • Deichmann ready for Mississippi State fans
    LSU OF braces for series in Starkville       
  • LSU exorcises mid-week Demons, Deichmann fright night
    LSU finished the season 8-6 in mid-week games with a win over the Demons.       
  • Mainieri suffered scare Tuesday night
    "Couldn't breathe" as Deichmann went down       
  • UA, Grace athletes sign to colleges
    Even though University Academy was ineligible for any postseason accolades or tournaments this season, Darius Gaston and Malik Silas continued to stay on the grind for strong senior seasons.       
  • John Marcase: Superstitions and jinxes put target on Astros, Brady
    Superstitions and jinxes go hand-in-hand with baseball and softball like sunflower seeds and bubble gum       
  • LSU's new offense 'hits you like a triple option'
    Tiger Tour touched down in Baton Rouge Monday night with new coordinators Matt Canada and Dave Aranda replacing Orgeron.       
  • LSUA doubles down on Brenau with pair of aces
    There is nothing like having a pair of aces to win a game.       
  • LSU community leaders react to Alton Sterling decision with message of unity
    University community leaders now find themselves in a similar position to the one they were in last July as they work to maintain a safe environment on campus while keeping channels of public dialogue open for students.
  • DOJ declines to charge officers in Alton Sterling shooting
    The two Baton Rouge police officers involved in the shooting death of Alton Sterling last summer will not be charged, according to an official announcement made by the U.S. Department of Justice on Wednesday.
  • Greek organizations recognized for outstanding philanthropic events
    The University’s Greek councils chose three organizations to be recognized for their outstanding achievements in philanthropy for the 2016-17 academic year. Delta Zeta, Kappa Alpha and Zeta Phi Beta all received awards for events that raised money for various causes.
  • Louisiana Art and Science museum curates “Polymers in Art through the Centuries” exhibit with LSU professor
    Whether it’s an 18th century Charles D’Agar oil painting or a 3-D printed sculpture, science can be found everywhere in art.
  • Newly elected SG president and vice president look forward to new initiatives
    The University celebrated inauguration day for LSU Student Government on April 17 with the induction of new the Student Government president and vice president, Jason Badeaux and Leah Sanders, respectively.
  • Freedom Services, exterior cleaining service, hires veterans
  • LSU boasts history of influential commencement speakers
    As seniors approach their final week of classes, there is likely only one thing on their minds — walking across the stage and receiving their degrees. Before they can do that, however, graduates and guests will hear from Gov. John…
  • LSU Football ticket surcharge proposed for tiger conservation
    An LSU Football ticket surcharge proposed in the Faculty Senate could benefit the Tigers’ namesake.
  • Mike the Tiger Habitat Renovation
    Nearly six months have passed since LSU lost their beloved mascot Mike the Tiger to a rare cancer, since then, LSU Veterinarian Dr. David Baker has been searching for a new live mascot to take over Mikes legacy.
  • Burgers by the Curbside
    Local burger restaurant Curbside is getting a lot of love from the Baton Rouge community after opening a new store in mid-town.
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  • 2016 Health Care Directory
    Check out the 2016 Health Care Directory and read about our Healthcare Hero Dr. Brian Elkins.       
  • 2016 Health Care Directory
    Check out the 2016 Health Care Directory and read about our Healthcare Hero Dr. Brian Elkins.       
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  • Amid Nakamoto investigation, Council on Aging reviews travel policy
    BATON ROUGE – Amid a Chris Nakamoto investigation for the WBRZ News 2 Investigative Unit, the EBR Council on Aging revealed it's changing its policies and procedures dealing with travel policies for its staff.Nakamoto and the WBRZ Investigative Unit filed a public records request – essentially, a formal request to review public documents held by an organization – related to travel expenses to various out-of-state locations and cruises paid for by the Council on Aging or paid through the agency. The request to review records related to trips was sent May 17 and asked to see records for trips and cruises since January 2015.The agency replied it would supply documents but as of this post had not provided the requested information. State law does not require immediate access, but requires agencies respond to a request and provide information in a few days.Most recently, Nakamoto's team highlighted a $12,000 trip to a convention in Chicago. Five people attended on behalf of the EBR Council on Aging. The head of a nearby council on aging questioned the spending habits and argued money could have been better spent on services for senior citizens. Last year, the EBR Council on Aging said it had an extensive waiting list for seniors looking for services. In a news release Thursday, the agency announced it was creating more specific guidelines for travel. “...attention has been called to the manner that the EBRCOA conducts senior trips, cultural outings, and excursions, particularly out of state and cruises,” the agency wrote in its news release. The agency said it will meet with the Governor's Office of Elderly Affairs to implement better policies soon. Until a meeting is held and issues are resolved, the Council on Aging said it is suspending travel arrangements.“Until this agency receives definitive guidelines and policies, we will halt all trips with the exception of day trips to programs and luncheons,” the head of the agency's governing board, Jennifer Moisant, said in a prepared statement.In a separate statement Wednesday, Moisant revealed she and the board overseeing the Council on Aging are trying to make adjustments in areas where she said there have been mistakes. Click HERE to read more.WBRZ has requested interviews with Moisant, who was recently elected to the board. Moisant said she will provide an on-camera interview once she has reviewed the situations and hopes to be able to shed light on what has gone wrong and how the board plans to provide more transparency. The Council on Aging has found itself at the center of controversy since a property tax narrowly passed funding its operations last year. Permalink| Comments
  • Edwards threatens veto if House budget passes
    BATON ROUGE - Gov. John Bel Edwards is threatening to veto Louisiana's state operating budget bill if it looks like the version crafted by House Republicans.The Democratic governor Thursday repeated his description of the House-backed spending plan as a "non-starter." But he went further, saying he would reject the document entirely if it arrived in the form it passed the majority-GOP House. Edwards doesn't expect the Senate's version to look like the House-proposed plan. Senate Finance Chairman Eric LaFleur says senators have been told the governor would veto a budget that looks like the House version. The House proposal would leave $206 million on the table, to hedge against its expectations income forecasts are too rosy. Edwards says that would force unnecessary, harmful cuts on health services, prisons and other programs.Permalink| Comments
  • NOAA predicts 'above-normal' hurricane season for 2017
    BATON ROUGE – The Atlantic Ocean could see “another above normal hurricane season” this year, according to forecasters at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center.Forecasters predict a 45 percent chance of an above normal season, a 35 percent chance of a near normal season and only a 20 percent chance of a below-normal season.NOAA is also predicting a 70 percent likelihood of 11 to 17 named storms, with five to nine becoming hurricanes. Forecasters also expect two to four major hurricanes.“An average season produces 12 named storms of which six become hurricanes, including three major hurricanes,” NOAA says.The numbers also include Tropical Storm Arlene, a rare pre-season storm that formed over the eastern Atlantic in April.Click here to read the full prediction report.  Permalink| Comments
  • EXCLUSIVE: Mayor speaks out after call for firing of BRPD officer
    BATON ROUGE – Mayor Sharon Weston Broome is speaking out in her first on camera interview after she wrote a letter to attorneys for Alton Sterling's family saying she believes Officer Blaine Salamoni should be fired. The Mayor said the week following the federal decision not to indict the officers, she had a meeting with the feds."After having a consultation with the Department of Justice after their announcement, it became clear to me based upon the info they provided to me and Chief Dabadie that certainly officer Salamoni obstructed a lot of police policy and procedures," Broome said.Broome said that went into her decision process to ask the chief to terminate Salamoni and discipline Officer Howie Lake.On Thursday morning the Baton Rouge Union of Police issued a response to Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome's call for the firing of one of the BRPD officers involved in the shooting death of Alton Sterling.The union stated that "it is confusing to us that the Mayor-President would call for the termination of our Officers before the legal process has concluded." The full statement is below:"The Baton Rouge Union of Police stand behind the men and women of the Baton Rouge Police Department and the citizens of Baton Rouge.  It is confusing to us that the Mayor-President would call for the termination of our Officers before the legal process has concluded, thus preventing their due process.  For us to be a truly unified city, our leaders MUST not divide us."Broome said she welcomes the Union to discuss issues with them, but said she believes the Union needs to re-examine positions they have taken in prior instances.This entire controversy stems from attorneys for the Sterling family sending a letter to the Baton Rouge Police Department and Mayor Broome demanding the firing of BRPD Officers Howie Lake II and Blane Salamoni.The letter demands the "immediate termination" of Officer Blane Salamoni from the police department. The demand stems from the family's meeting with the Department of Justice where the family was informed that Officer Salamoni "walked up to a non-confrontational Alton Sterling and put his department-issued firearm to the side of Mr. Sterling's head and stated, 'B***h, I will shoot you in your mother f***ing head,' the letter notes. The document further suggests that such behavior is rumored to be "common."Broome's response three hours later Wednesday afternoon stated, "I believe they should be removed from paid administrative leave and disciplined consistent with the severity of their actions. In Officer Salamoni's case, this warrants termination." She further wrote that she will "following up with a hand-delivered letter to the chief stating such."Broome described Salamoni's actions as "disturbing and reprehensible" and understood the "outrage" of Sterling's family and the community. Broome wrote that she has voiced her concerns to BRPD Chief Carl Dabadie about the employment statuses of Salamoni and Lake and said that the chief's next steps are important. Click here to read Mayor Broome's full response letter. The attorneys' letter, signed by Attorneys L. Chris Stewart, Brandon Decuir, Justin Bamberg and Michael RD Adams, notes that Salamoni's actions are a "direct violation of BRPD's policy regarding de-escalation."They say his behavior escalated the situation and "placed in Mr. Sterling's mind that he was going to be killed no matter what he did even if he complied," the letter cites.The letter further states that the attorneys have requested all documents on the officers' past behavior."The lack of any action by the Mayor and Chief of Police have forced the attorneys for the Sterling family to now request all documents related to discipline within the BRPD, in order to determine if all officers are being treated equally regarding discipline no matter the race, gender or family ties."To read the attorney's full letter click here. When asked what would happen if Police Chief Carl Dabadie doesn't heed Broome's suggestion to fire Salamoni, she responded, "We'll cross that bridge when we get there."Permalink| Comments

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  • Pat Buchanan: "After The Confederates, Who's Next?"
    Authored by Patrick Buchanan via Buchanan.org, On Sept. 1, 1864, Union forces under Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman, victorious at Jonesborough, burned Atlanta and began the March to the Sea where Sherman’s troops looted and pillaged farms and towns all along the 300-mile road to Savannah. Captured in the Confederate defeat at Jonesborough was William Martin Buchanan of Okolona, Mississippi, who was transferred by rail to the Union POW stockade at Camp Douglas, Illinois. By the standards of modernity, my great-grandfather, fighting to prevent the torching of Georgia’s capital, was engaged in a criminal and immoral cause. And “Uncle Billy” Sherman was a liberator. Under President Grant, Sherman took command of the Union army and ordered Gen. Philip Sheridan, who had burned the Shenandoah Valley to starve Virginia into submission, to corral the Plains Indians on reservations. It is in dispute as to whether Sheridan said, “The only good Indian is a dead Indian.” There is no dispute as to the contempt Sheridan had for the Indians, killing their buffalo to deprive them of food. Today, great statues stand in the nation’s capital, along with a Sherman and a Sheridan circle, to honor these most ruthless of generals in that bloodiest of wars that cost 620,000 American lives. Yet, across the South and even in border states like Kentucky, Maryland and Missouri, one may find statues of Confederate soldiers in town squares to honor the valor and sacrifices of the Southern men and boys who fought and fell in the Lost Cause. When the Spanish-American War broke out, President McKinley, who as a teenage soldier had fought against “Stonewall” Jackson in the Shenandoah and been at Antietam, bloodiest single-day battle of the Civil War, removed his hat and stood for the singing of “Dixie,” as Southern volunteers and former Confederate soldiers paraded through Atlanta to fight for their united country. My grandfather was in that army. For a century, Americans lived comfortably with the honoring, North and South, of the men who fought on both sides. But today’s America is not the magnanimous country we grew up in. Since the ’60s, there has arisen an ideology that holds that the Confederacy was the moral equivalent of Nazi Germany and those who fought under its battle flag should be regarded as traitors or worse. Thus, in New Orleans, statues of Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederate States of America, and General Robert E. Lee were just pulled down. And a drive is underway to take down the statue of Andrew Jackson, hero of the Battle of New Orleans and president of the United States, which stands in Jackson Square. Why? Old Hickory was a slave owner and Indian fighter who used his presidential power to transfer the Indians of Georgia out to the Oklahoma Territory in a tragedy known as the Trail of Tears. But if Jackson, and James K. Polk, who added the Southwest and California to the United States after the Mexican-American War, were slave owners, so, too, were four of our first five presidents. The list includes the father of our country, George Washington, the author of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson, and the author of our Constitution, James Madison. Not only are the likenesses of Washington and Jefferson carved on Mount Rushmore, the two Virginians are honored with two of the most magnificent monuments and memorials in Washington, D.C. Behind this remorseless drive to blast the greatest names from America’s past off public buildings, and to tear down their statues and monuments, is an egalitarian extremism rooted in envy and hate. Among its core convictions is that spreading Christianity was a cover story for rapacious Europeans who, after discovering America, came in masses to dispossess and exterminate native peoples. “The white race,” wrote Susan Sontag, “is the cancer of human history.” Today, the men we were taught to revere as the great captains, explorers, missionaries and nation-builders are seen by many as part of a racist, imperialist, genocidal enterprise, wicked men who betrayed and eradicated the peace-loving natives who had welcomed them. What they blindly refuse to see is that while its sins are scarlet, as are those of all civilizations, it is the achievements of the West that are unrivaled. The West ended slavery. Christianity and the West gave birth to the idea of inalienable human rights. As scholar Charles Murray has written, 97 percent of the world’s most significant figures and 97 percent of the world’s greatest achievements in the arts, architecture, literature, astrology, biology, earth sciences, physics, medicine, mathematics and technology came from the West. What is disheartening is not that there are haters of our civilization out there, but that there seem to be fewer defenders. Of these icon-smashers it may be said: Like ISIS and Boko Haram, they can tear down statues, but these people could never build a country. What happens, one wonders, when these Philistines discover that the seated figure in the statue, right in front of D.C.’s Union Station, is the High Admiral of the Ocean Sea, Christopher Columbus? Happy Memorial Day!
  • "Secret" Russian Doc Influenced Comey's Hillary Probe Even Though He Knew It Was Fake: CNN
    Two days ago we highlighted a Washington Post story which suggested that Comey only decided to host his now-infamous July 5th press conference, the one where he said that Hillary was "extremely careless" in her handling of classified information but that he would not pursue charges, after reviewing a "dubious Russian document" which alleged that former Attorney General Loretta Lynch personally assured someone within the Clinton campaign that the FBI's investigation wouldn't "go too far" (see "'Secret' Russian Document Influenced Comey's Probe Into Hillary Clinton: Report").  This was WaPo's salacious title: The point of Wapo's story was to provide some 'tangible evidence' that Russia had in some way definitively influenced the outcome of the 2016 election. That said, an unfortunate side-effect was that it made Comey and the entire FBI look completely incompetent for being duped by some fake Russian memo. Of course, we can only assume that Wapo casting Comey and the entire FBI as a bunch of total buffoons didn't sit well with some agents.  Therefore, its only reasonable to assume that one of those slighted agents, maybe even Comey himself, decided to correct the record by informing the mainstream media outlets that the FBI knew the Russian intel was fake all along. And here's where the story gets really fun.  CNN, the NYT and all the other mainstream outlets followed Wapo's lead on the "dubious Russian document" story and they couldn't simply retract it because that would (i) be embarrassing and (ii) invalidate their 'proof' that Russia had influenced the election by conning Comey into doing something he otherwise would not have done. All of which brings us to today's comical headline from CNN: Yes, you read that right, CNN effectively argues that Russia influenced Comey by not influencing Comey.  Here is the thought process from CNN: Then-FBI Director James Comey knew that a critical piece of information relating to the investigation into Hillary Clinton's email was fake -- created by Russian intelligence -- but he feared that if it became public it would undermine the probe and the Justice Department itself, according to multiple officials with knowledge of the process.   As a result, Comey acted unilaterally last summer to publicly declare the investigation over -- without consulting then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch -- while at the same time stating that Clinton had been "extremely careless" in her handling of classified information. His press conference caused a firestorm of controversy and drew criticism from both Democrats and Republicans. It's a win-win really...CNN still gets to 'confirm' that the Russians influenced the election and Comey and the FBI look slightly less incompetent.  Of course, in order to believe any of this utter non-sense you have to completely erase from your memory that inconvenient meeting between Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Bill Clinton that took place on the Phoenix tarmac on June 29th...just 6 days before Comey made his announcement...because surely that couldn't have possible tainted Comey's opinion of the DOJ's independence, right? For those who "do not recall" this event...here is a reminder:    Of course, you would also have to completely dismiss Comey's testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee in which he directly confirmed our thesis above, namely that Lynch's meeting with Bill Clinton was, in fact, the reason he determined that the Justice Department couldn't "credibly" end the Hillary Clinton email investigation. “A number of things had gone on which I can’t talk about yet, that made me worry that the department leadership could not credibly complete the investigation and decline prosecution without grievous damage to the American people’s confidence in the justice system."   “And then the capper was — and I’m not picking on the attorney general, Loretta Lynch, who I like very much — but her meeting with President Clinton on that airplane was the capper for me, and I then said, you know what, the department cannot, by itself, credibly end this."   But sure, CNN, it wasn't Lynch's meeting with Bill Clinton 6 days prior that forced Comey's hand...it was a fake Russian memo that Comey knew was fake but feared would be leaked to the public that undermined the DOJ's credibility.  Can anyone within CNN really believe their own story?  Really?
  • Amid Russia Crisis, Trump Prepares "War Room", "Big White House Changes", Loss Of Twitter
    In lieu of the Friday night "Trump bombshell" deliverable from the NYT-WaPo complex, today it was Reuters' and the Wall Street Journal's turn to lay out the suspenseful weekend reads, previewing major potential upcoming changes to the Trump administration. First, according to Reuters, Trump's top advisors are preparing to establish a "war room" to combat negative reports and mounting questions about communication between Russia.  Steve Bannon and Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, both senior advisors to the president, will be involved in the new messaging effort, which also aims to push Trump's policy agenda and schedule more rallies with supporters. This "most aggressive effort yet" to push back against allegations involving Russia and his presidential campaign, will launch once Trump returns from his overseas trip. Upon Trump’s return, the administration will add experienced political professionals and possibly more lawyers to handle the Russia probe, which has gained new urgency since the Justice Department appointed a special counsel to head the investigation, the sources said. On Thursday, NBC News reported that Kushner, who held several meetings with Russian officials following the election, is himself a focus of the probe, making him the first current White House official to be caught up in it, although Kushner, who is Trump's son-in-law, has not been accused of any wrongdoing. On Friday afternoon, the AP quoted Kushner's lawyer that if the FBI wants to talk to Jared Kushner about his Russian contacts, he stands ready to talk to federal investigators as well as Congress about his contacts and his role in Donald Trump's 2016 campaign. FBI probe aside, Kushner and Bannon will work to step up the White House’s strategic messaging. Trump’s former campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski - who has been seen in the White House recently - is also expected to be part of the messaging operation according to Reuters. Bannon and White House chief of staff Reince Priebus have been laying the groundwork for the messaging operation this week, sources told the news outlet. “Since the firing of Comey, that really exposed the fact that the White House in its current structure ... is not prepared for really a one-front war, let alone a two-front war,” a person who remains in regular communication with the White House told Reuters. “They need to have a structure in place that allows them to stay focused, [while] also truly fighting back on these attacks and these leaks.” The "war room" is just one of the steps Trump and his advisers plan to take to respond to the probe into Russia's attempts to influence the 2016 presidential election. Trump reportedly hired Marc Kasowitz as his personal attorney earlier this week to represent him and guide him through the Russia investigations following the appointment of former FBI director Robert Mueller as special counsel to oversee the Russia investigation. The president and his team are putting together a legal team of prominent lawyers who can help him best proceed through the questions surrounding whether his campaign colluded with Moscow. Quoted by Reuters, Christopher Ruddy, chief executive of Newsmax Media and a Trump friend, said he expects the president will travel more when he returns from overseas and encouraged the White House to focus on issues that pump up his base voters. “From my perspective, I think the president should be doing the stuff that he does best, which is talking about his agenda: jobs, trade and security,” Ruddy said. Republicans in Congress are aching for Trump to leave the distraction of the Russia probe aside and focus on legislation and nominating officials to fill the hundreds of vacant slots across the administration. “What we really want to be able to do is tend to our business,” Mike Rounds, a Republican Senator from South Dakota, told Reuters. "We've got a healthcare bill we're working on. We've got tax reform that we think is important.” Earlier on Friday, former House Speaker John Boehner said that Trump's time in office has been a "complete disaster" aside from foreign affairs. Boehner told an energy conference he supported efforts to "get to the bottom" of any potential interactions between Trump associates and the Russian government but described any calls to impeach Trump as the purview of "the crazy left-wing Democratic colleagues of mine." * * * Second, in a separate but similar report from the WSJ, the paper writes that Trump is "actively discussing major changes" in the White House, including a shakeup of his senior team, after spending much of his free time during his overseas trip weighing the Russia investigation and the political crisis it poses for him. A flurry of meetings devoted to White House operations are scheduled for next week, officials said, and sparks are expected to fly. While this isn't the first time a major shake up around Trump was announced as imminent, recalls Axios reporting two weeks ago that an "angry" Trump was planning a huge reboot, and that Priebus, Bannon and Spicer could be fired, this time the urgency is far greater, and the WSJ reports that other revisions on the table include a new filter of the president’s social-media habit and fewer scheduled press briefings, officials and allies said. The anticipated moves are the latest sign of how the investigation into Russia’s interference in last year’s election, and the circumstances of the president’s firing of FBI Director James Comey, is defining the new administration. “Everything is in play,” one Trump adviser said. The biggest change may be that Trump is about to lose his twitter privileges for good: One major change under consideration would vet the president’s social media posts through a team of lawyers, who would decide if any needed to be adjusted or curtailed. The idea, said one of Mr. Trump’s advisers, is to create a system so that tweets “don’t go from the president’s mind out to the universe.”   Some of Mr. Trump’s tweets—from hinting that he may have taped conversations with Mr. Comey to suggesting without any evidence that former President Barack Obama wire-tapped Trump Tower—have opened him to criticism and at times confounded his communications team.   Trump aides have long attempted to rein in his tweeting, and some saw any type of legal vetting as difficult to implement. “I would be shocked if he would agree to that,” said Barry Bennett, a former Trump campaign aide. It also appears that Sean Spicer is on his way out: Other changes under discussion include removing communications director Mike Dubke and installing Sarah Sanders as the main spokesman instead of Mr. Spicer. Another consideration is scaling back on daily press briefings.   Mr. Spicer, one of the only practicing Catholics among Mr. Trump’s senior staff, was a last-minute scratch from the president’s meeting with Pope Francis this week, a move that shocked some senior administration officials.   Mr. Spicer and Ms. Sanders didn’t respond to further questions on any coming changes. In a a contradiction from the Reuters report, the WSJ notes that neither Bannon nor Kushner themselves are safe. Mr. Trump consulted Mr. Kushner on the firing of Mr. Comey, officials say. Mr. Bannon opposed the move and was absent from the inner circle who advised the president on the move. Mr. Bannon’s critics say they suspect him of leaking to the press and regard him as too much of a firebrand to massage the president’s agenda through Washington’s traditional processes. Mr. Kushner’s detractors in the West Wing refer to him as the “young princeling.” But most interesting is the alleged emerging tension between Trump and his Goldman advisors: "Some Trump advisers have also questioned the judgment of communications officials, citing as an example the rollout of a tax-plan outline in April that featured Goldman Sachs alumnae Steven Mnuchin, the Treasury secretary, and Gary Cohn, the National Economic Council director. “The left is automatically going to say the tax plan is tailored to the rich and to Wall Street. And we just gave them an image of the rich and of Wall Street,” one Trump former campaign official said. In an amusing tangent, the WSJ also points out that Trump’s return to Washington will mark the end of a period which, White House staffers said, "brought some relief from the hectic pace of the news surrounding the administration and the Russia investigation. Some noted that it gave them a rare time to eat dinner at home." * * * While it could be just another red herring, it is likely that Trump's return may unleash the political chaos that dominated the news cycle for most of May. Alternatively, if Trump is serious about overhauling his communication strategy, his inner circle of advisors - especially those originating from Goldman, as well as cracking down on non-stop leaks, then there just is some hope that the relentless news bombardment may fade, if only for a few summer weeks. One can always hope, even if the odds are stacked very much against.
  • The War On Workers, Phase II - Truth Has Become A Liability
    Authored by MN Gordon via EconomicPrism.com, It’s been a long row to hoe for most workers during the first 17 years of the new millennium.  The soil’s been hard and rocky.  The rewards for one’s toils have been bleak. For many, laboriously dragging a push plow’s dull blade across the land has hardly scratched enough of a rut in the ground to plant a pitiful row of string beans.  What’s more, any bean sprouts that broke through the stony earth were quickly strangled out by seasonal weeds.  Those ‘green shoots’ that persisted bore pods that dried out on the vine before maturity. This has been the common experience of the typical 21st century American worker, thus far. Countless, stories of labors with no fruits have been shared at bowling alleys across the Bible Belt.  There are also hard numbers that backup these woeful tales. Just this week, for example, Sentier Research released a new report showing that after scratching and clawing the earth day after day, median household income has finally surpassed a level last seen in January 2000.  In other words, living standards for the typical family are now a smidge higher than they were at the turn of the century.  Rick Newman offers several details: “Sentier calculates a monthly index representing median household income, based on Census Bureau data, starting at 100 in January of 2000.  Since it’s an index, it’s adjusted for inflation and represents the real earning power of a typical family.  The index drifted slightly above 100 a few times leading up to the 2008 financial meltdown, but mostly went sideways during the George W. Bush administration.  Then it plunged beginning in 2009, with a long recovery beginning in 2011.   “The latest reading in the Sentier index is 100.9, the first time it’s been above 100 since 2008. That number matches the previous high, from 2002, which means family income will hit a new high if it rises in May.” Rip Van Winkle Good grief.  What took so darn long? A lot has changed while the typical worker was running in place for the last decade and a half.  In fact, Rip Van Winkle would hardly recognize the world that remains after these lost years.  Good manners, good ethics, and good people have mostly gone the way of the dodo bird. For one, politics at home has gone stark raving mad.  Debbie Wasserman Shultz.  Jim Comey.  Barry Obama.  Susan Rice.  John Podesta.  Hillary Clinton.  Anthony Weiner.  Barney Frank.  John Burton.  Harry Reid.  Chuck Schumer.  Ted Kennedy’s ghost.  And on and on.  And so on and so forth. Years ago, when upright character was an expectation, these malevolent dingle berries would have been painted with tar and rolled in a dirty chicken coop full of feathers, among other things.  Nowadays, they get extended lordship, pensions, and countless hours of paid vacation. What to make of it? The federal government – and many state and local governments – appear to be self-destructing in grand fashion.  Federal agencies and politicians are stabbing each other and the President in the back at a clip last witnessed in Moscow during the twilight of the Soviet Union. At the same time, the truth has become a liability.  Specifically, sharing the dirty truth has become hazardous to one’s life expectancy.  For the ruling class has become desperate to keep the world tilted in its favor.  They’ll go to any length to keep money and power flowing towards them. The Attack on Workers, Phase II No doubt, President Trump’s a ghastly fellow.  But he’s not nearly as ghastly as the headlines make him out to be.  There are much worse haircuts out there.  Plus he’s facing an unwinnable battle. All of Congress wants Trump to fail and are doing everything they can to ensure this happens.  Even his most partial efforts to redirect some of the failing social programs that are bankrupting the country are greeted with a disjointed and frenetic mass hysteria.  Rational contemplation and pragmatic decision making has given way to foaming mouths and erratic neck convulsions. Should we be surprised?  Maybe this is the way things always were; only now they’ve been ratcheted up several notches.  For instance, two generations ago Nixon era Treasury Secretary William Simon let the cat out of the bag: “One of the things I learned during my tenure in Washington is that the civic book picture of government in operation is completely inaccurate.  The idea that our elected officials take part in a careful decision-making process—monitoring events, reviewing options, responsibly selecting policies—has almost no connection with reality.   “A more accurate image would be that of a runaway train with the throttle stuck wide open—while the passengers and crew are living it up in the dining car.” These days, however, the runaway train is one ridge turn from jumping the tracks.  Alas, a stock market crash, depression, and world war will likely accompany it.  After that the attack on worker begins in earnest.
  • Trump Defies G7, Refuses To Back Climate Deal After "Controversial" Debate
    The Group of Seven world leaders, or rather Six excluding Trump, tried to tame the US president... and failed. Which means on Saturday the group will sign off on a significantly "pared-down" statement at the close of their meeting in Sicily - an indication of deep divisions on climate change, trade and various other issues between Trump and the rest of the developed world. Pushing hard to persuade Trump to back the landmark Paris climate accord deal, after hours of talks that were described by Angela Merkel as "controversial" the G-7 leaders failed to get Trump's endorsement. The leaders did, however, issue a joint statement on fighting terrorism, admonishing internet service providers and social media companies to "substantially increase" their efforts to rein in extremist content. According to Italy's Prime Minister and host, Paolo Gentiloni, the group was also inching closer to finding common language on trade, a controversial for Trump who has repeatedly pushed for an "America first" agenda. But on the issue of climate, there was no breakthrough. "There is one open question, which is the U.S. position on the Paris climate accords," Gentiloni told reporters according to Reuters, referring to a 2015 deal on reducing greenhouse gas emissions.   "All others have confirmed their total agreement on the accord." U.S. officials had signaled beforehand that Trump, who dismissed climate change as a "hoax" during his campaign, would not take a decision on the climate deal in Taormina, the cliff-top town overlooking the Mediterranean where G7 leaders met. Other leaders, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel and new French President Emmanuel Macron, had hoped to sway the president at his first major international summit.  They failed, despite what Merkel described as a "controversial" climate debate and added that there was a "very intensive" exchange of views. One can only imagine. Speaking separately, Trump's economic adviser Gary Cohn said Trump's views on climate were "evolving" and that he would ultimately do what was best for the United States. * * * The tense summit, held at a luxury hotel that was once a Dominican monastery and base for the Nazi air force during World War Two, took place one day after Trump blasted NATO allies for spending too little on defense and described Germany's trade surplus as "very bad" in a meeting with EU officials. As noted yesterday, Trump's NATO speech shocked allies, who had been expecting him to reaffirm Washington's commitment to Article 5, the part of the military alliance's founding treaty which describes an attack on one member as an attack on all. Italy chose to stage the summit in Sicily to draw attention to Africa, which is 140 miles (225 km) from the island at its closest point across the Mediterranean. More than half a million migrants, most from sub-Saharan Africa, have reached Italy by boat since 2014, taking advantage of the chaos in Libya to launch their perilous crossings. In addition to trade and climate, drafts of the communique as of Friday were due to address topics such as migration and gender equality. The “ongoing large-scale movement” of migrants and refugees calls for “coordinated efforts,” according to a draft of the communique seen by Bloomberg News. “We reaffirm the sovereign rights of states to control their own borders and set clear limits on net migration levels, as key elements of their national security and economic well-being,” according to the draft.   The nations are also set to say gender equality is fundamental for human rights. The leaders also issued a separate statement on counter-terrorism efforts that called on social media companies to do more in the fight against terrorism. As the leaders attended a concert and gala dinner on Friday night, their aides worked to finalize the draft wording. "On the major theme of global trade, we are still working on the shape of the final communique, but it seems to me the direct discussions today have produced common positions that we can work on," said Gentiloni. The final G7 communique traditionally outlines the common positions of the member states' leaders on the economy and other global issues requiring joint action by the world’s leading powers. This year’s statement is on pace to be less than 10 pages, or less than a third the 32-page memo signed last year in Japan, according to Bloomberg.  “You can test this stuff empirically. A shorter communique tends to mean the less they actually produce by way of commitments,” John Kirton, director of the University of Toronto’s G7 Research Group, told Bloomberg. He downplayed the relative scale of divisions: “I don’t think it’s more divided than it’s ever been before,” he said, citing the 1982 summit as a failure where the issue of a Soviet gas pipeline, opposed by Ronald Reagan, divided the countries. “So they patched over some communique, but then they all ran off to their post-summit briefings and said ’we don’t agree with it, we don’t agree with it.’ So it made things worse. They kind of publicized their failure.” * * * There was one thing the group could agree on: a crackdown on the "internet abuse." “We will combat the misuse of the Internet by terrorists,” the statement said. The G-7 “calls for communication service providers and social media companies to substantially increase their efforts to address terrorist content.”
  • Silicon Valley Billionaire Unveils "Air Yacht" To Deliver Food, Supplies To Desperate People In "Remote Locations"
    In a development that’s emblematic of the massive wealth inequality in Silicon Valley, the Guardian on Friday revealed new details about the "secret" airship that Google co-founder Sergey Brin is building at an old Nasa airbase in Santa Clara County. According to the report, which cited anonymous sources who couldn’t speak on the record because of non-disclosure agreements, Brin intends to use the airship to deliver food and supplies to desperate people in “remote locations”– a task that’s uniquely suited for an airship because airships don’t require airports - or any infrastructure, really - to travel from point A to point B. Of course, when the luxurious “air yacht” isn’t being used for these humanitarian purpose, it will serve as a leisure vessel for Brin’s families and friends. Here are a few more details about the airship reported by The Guardian:The airship’s 200-meter size would make it the largest airship in the modern age, though It would stil be smaller than the Hindenburg Zeppelins of the 1930s and the American navy airship USS Macon, which was once based in the very same hangars where Brin’s aircraft is now being built. Brin’s airship will rely on a system of internal gas bladders to create the ballast necessary to keep the ship anchored to the ground while heavy loads are being offloaded. In November 2014, a Google-controlled company called Planetary Ventures signed a 60-year lease for more than 1,000 acres of Moffett Field at Nasa’s Ames airbase, where construction on the airship could safely begin. The leased area, which is located near Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., includes the base’s three largest airship hangers. Brin’s airship was originally intended to use hydrogen as a lifting gas instead of helium because hydrogen is much cheaper and provides 10% more lift. But the Federal Aviation Administration requires all airships to use non-flammable lifting gases, which rules out highly volatile hydrogen. The gas notoriously caused the 1937 crash of the Hindenburg over New Jersey, which killed 36. In early 2015, Brin asked aerospace engineer Alan Weston to build a one-tenth scale model of a variable buoyancy airship to test its air worthiness. Those flight tests apparently went well. Bloomberg reported back in April that construction on the airship had begun, again citing anonymous sources.
  • Global Pension Underfunding Will Grow To $400 Trillion Over Next 30 Years: World Economic Forum
    Earlier this week we highlighted "Six Terrifying Graphs That Summarize America's Public Pension Crisis" which ranked state, county and city-level public pensions in the United States by which are screwed the most.  To summarize, the study concluded that public pensions in the U.S. alone are currently underfunded by nearly $4 trillion and that taxpayers in Illinois, California and New Jersey should probably be looking to move before getting drowned in their state's coming pension-induced tax hike tsunami. Of course, as we've argued before, the current pension underfunding levels are sure to only get worse over the coming decades as the world will have to contend with a wave of retiring Baby Boomers and a period of lackluster, volatile returns.  So how bad could the global funding gap get?  Unfortunately, the World Economic Forum (WEF) recently set out to solve that impossible math equation and it turns out the answer is about $400 trillion...give or take a couple trillion.   Not surprisingly, the WEF attributed their terrifying conclusion to an ageing population, lack of savings, low expected growth rates and financially illiterate citizens. Long-term, low-growth environment: Over the past 10 years, long-term investment returns have been significantly lower than historic averages. Equities have performed 3%-5% below historic averages and bond returns have typically been 1%-3% lower. Low rates have grown future liabilities, and at the same time investment returns have been lower than expected and unable to make up the growing pension shortfall.   Inadequate savings rates: To support a reasonable level of income in retirement, 10%-15% of an average annual salary needs to be saved. Today, individual savings rates in most countries are far lower. This is already presenting challenges where traditionally defined benefit structures would have provided a guaranteed pension benefit. Now, as workers look at their defined contribution retirement balances, with no guaranteed benefits, they are realizing that the retirement income their savings will provide will be much lower than expected.   Low levels of financial literacy:  Levels of financial literacy are very low worldwide. This represents a threat to pension systems which are more selfdirected and which rely more on private savings in addition to employer- or government-provided savings. Of course, ignoring that minor ~20 year increase in life expectancy over the past 60 years without raising retirement ages can take a toll on those present value calculations of future liabilities.   Oh, and turns out that politicians creating massive ponzi schemes to promise citizens that their government would take care of their financial needs in perpetuity, while never really bothering to explain the true costs of such programs, was probably a bad idea.   But luckily these politicians are exempt from being prosecuted for their financial crimes...so taxpayers will just have to deal with picking up the $400 trillion tab.   The full WEF study can be viewed here:
  • Hillary Clinton: "The Right Is Afraid Of Me Because I Don't Die"
    After recovering from another coughing fit... Hillary: COUGH Dems: So inspiring Hillary: I need a lonzinger Dems: She's my hero Hillary: COUGH Dems: BEST SPEECH EVER#Wellesley2017 pic.twitter.com/yDpPW7Qjm0 — ????? ? (@LVNancy) May 26, 2017 Hillary Clinton's so-called commencement speech turned into a political rant as she lobbed implicit impeachment jabs at President Trump over his Comey dismissal... However, in an interview with New York magazine later in the day, election-loser Clinton went to town ripping President Trump for firing FBI Director James Comey, calling it "an effort to derail and bury" the federal investigation into possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia, and asking (and answering) "why is The Right so afraid of me?" As The Hill reports, former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton is pledging not to drop out of the political fight, despite what she calls efforts by some conservatives to silence her. “You know, these guys on the other side are not just interested in my losing, they want to keep coming after me. I mean, think about that for a minute,” Clinton said.   “What are they so afraid of? Me, to some extent. Because I don’t die, despite their best efforts. But what [really drives them] is what I represent." Which is supremely ironic given the media's incessant attacks on Trump since he 'won' the election. However Clinton was not done. Then she ripped President Trump for firing FBI Director James Comey, calling it “an effort to derail and bury” the federal investigation into possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia. "I am less surprised than I am worried,” Clinton said in an interview with New York magazine published Friday. “Not that he shouldn’t have been disciplined. And certainly the Trump campaign relished everything that was done to me in July and then particularly in October.”   “Having said that, I think what’s going on now is an effort to derail and bury the Russia inquiry, and I think that’s terrible for our country,” she said in the interview, which took place a day after Comey's firing. Finally The Hill notes that the former secretary of State is in the process of writing a book, in which she reflects on her election loss. Clinton says the process is “excruciating.” An extremely ironic word to use given how so many feel hearing from her every day since the lost election...
  • Egyptian Warplanes Bomb Terrorist Camps In Libya After Attack On Coptic Christians
    Hours after gunmen opened fire on a convoy of vehicles carrying Coptic Christian worshippers to a desert monastery in Egypt, killing 28, the Egyptian warplanes carried out six bombing strikes targeting camps near Derna in Libya where Cairo believes militants responsible for the deadly attack were trained, Egyptian military sources said quoted by Reuters. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said directed strikes against what he called terrorist camps, declaring in a televised address that states that sponsored terrorism would be punished. He also vowed to continue striking bases used to train militants and who carry out terrorist attacks in his country, whether those camps were inside or outside the country. "The terrorist incident that took place today will not pass unnoticed," Sisi said. "We are currently targeting the camps where the terrorists are trained." “Egypt will not hesitate in striking any camps that harbor or train terrorist elements whether inside Egypt or outside Egypt,” the al-Ahram news agency quoted Sisi as saying. The strikes took place around sundown, hours after the deadly attack. Christians, who account for about 10% of Egypt’s population of 80 million, have become the victims of an intensifying campaign of bombings and shootings masterminded by ISIS, which is trying to expand its footprint in Egypt. In April, at least 37 people were killed and more than 100 injured in two separate bombings at Christian Coptic churches packed with worshippers in northern Egypt one week before Coptic Easter. Following the Libyan incursion, Egyptian armed forces released a short video which was aired on state television following the president’s speech. The voiceover in the army video said its air force carried out strikes on targets in Libya “after confirming their involvement in planning and committing the terrorist attack in Minya governorate on Friday." Egypt’s military said that the air strikes are ongoing, local media reports. Egyptian security forces have destroyed some 300 vehicles over the past two months which attempted to cross the border from Libya in order to bring in “evil,” according to Sisi, who emphasized the huge efforts his country has undertaken to battle terrorism. The Egyptian president also directly addressed Donald Trump to take the lead in fighting terrorism. “I direct my appeal to President Trump: I trust you, your word and your ability to make fighting global terror your primary task,” he said.  On Friday President Trump condemned the attacks on Egypt’s Coptic Christians, denouncing the “thuggish ideology” and “evil organizations of terror.” The White House issued the following statement earlier in the day: Terrorists are engaged in a war against civilization, and it is up to all who value life to confront and defeat this evil. This merciless slaughter of Christians in Egypt tears at our hearts and grieves our souls. Wherever innocent blood is spilled, a wound is inflicted upon humanity. But this attack also steels our resolve to bring nations together for the righteous purpose of crushing the evil organizations of terror, and exposing their depraved, twisted, and thuggish ideology.   America also makes clear to its friends, allies, and partners that the treasured and historic Christian Communities of the Middle East must be defended and protected. The bloodletting of Christians must end, and all who aid their killers must be punished.   America stands with President Al Sisi and all the Egyptian people today, and always, as we fight to defeat this common enemy.   Civilization is at a precipice—and whether we climb or fall will be decided by our ability to join together to protect all faiths, all religions, and all innocent life. No matter what, America will do what it must to protect its people. No militant group has yet claimed responsibility for the deadly attack on the bus.
  • Weekend Reading: Correction Over As "Trump Hope" Remains
    Authored by Lance Roberts via RealInvestmentAdvice.com, Over the last couple of months, I have repeatedly discussed what has been possibly the most “boring” market ever. That was until the previous Wednesday when the market deciding to take a quick “road trip” to the 50-dma.  It didn’t last long. The market promptly went back to sleep in a light volume flotation (note decline in volume during advance) back to old highs. Yesterday, after multiple attempts, the market was finally able to muster a breakout above 2400 as “hopes and dreams” of “Trump tax cuts” once again took the lead over worries of “impeachment.”  While on a short-term basis, the bullish bias continues, which keeps portfolios invested, for now, the intermediate-term (weekly) trends also remain within the confines of the bullish trend from the lows of 2016. However, the “alert” signal still remains from a very high level as markets push back into extreme overbought terrain. This suggests that upside is somewhat limited as there has not been enough of a correction to alleviate more extreme conditions. Importantly, as noted on Tuesday, bonds aren’t buying the breakout: “Lastly, despite stocks pushing near all-time highs, the bond market continues to flirt with levels close to 2%. The continued move to “risk off” holdings, despite a rising stock market, suggests that ultimately either stocks OR bonds will be wrong. Historically, bonds have tended to be right more often than not.” Economic data is not buying it either, as data continues to come in softer than expected from new and existing home sales, to autos, to inventories. Either the stock market is right and everything is going to play “catch up,” or it’s not. While we remain long-biased in equities currently, we continue to remain wary of the underlying deterioration in both market and economic data. Yes, anything is certainly possible. It just usually isn’t.  In the meantime, here is what I am reading this weekend. Politics/Fed/Economy Beware Of Central Bankers Bearing Gifts by Danielle Dimartino-Booth via MoneyStrong Trump’s Budget Is The Ultimate Con by Derek Thompson via The Atlantic What Keeps BofA Up At Night? by Tyler Durden via Zero Hedge Trump Budget: All Hat, No Cattle by David Stockman via Daily Reckoning Trump’s Budget Will Supercharge Economy by Stephen Moore via The Hill The Return Of Rosy, Fuzzy Math by Caroline Baum via MarketWatch Economy Needs Workers & Trumps Budget by IBD One Big Problem With Fed’s Balance Sheet Plan by Pedro Da Costa via BI 9-Top Takeaways From Trump’s Budget by Rob Garver via Fiscal Times Republicans Always Take Office At Market Tops by Patrick Watson via Mauldin Economics Why Businessmen Fail At Government by Ludwig Von Mises and FEE Monetary Policy Strangely Devoid Of Money by Jeffrey Snider via Alhambra Partners Economic Forecasting Very Much Broken by Narayana Kocherlakota via Bloomberg View The Trump Budget Doesn’t Balance by Robert Samuelson via RCM Inflation Is NOT Evenly Distributed by Charles Hugh Smith via Of Two Minds Will “Gradually” End Differently Than “Measured” by Peter Boockvar via The Boock Report Markets Hop On The Bus, Gus by Eric Cinnamond via EricCinnamond.com Traders Can Make A Killing Chasing “Smart Money” by Joe Ciolli via BI The Big Picture by Ray Dalio via Linked-In The Bubble That Could Break The World by James Rickards via Daily Reckoning Bull Market Not Hated, Just Not Trusted by Michael Santoli via CNBC How To Avoid Losing In Age Of Trump by Nigam Arora via MarketWatch Bears Have Made Some Progress by Chris Ciovacco via Ciovacco Capital Emerging Markets Still Look Strong by Michael Kahn via Barron’s It’s A Battle Between Politics & Liquidity by Sue Chang via MarketWatch Tech Stocks Haven’t Done This Since ’99 by Evelyn Chang via CNBC What NOT To Buy In Today’s Market by Vitaliy Katsenelson via Contrarian Edge Connecting The Dots by Erik Swarts via Market Anthropology How Companies Fib About Earnings by John Crudele via NY Post Research / Interesting Reads “Liar Loans” Dog Automakers by Wolf Richter via Wolf Street Manipulation In The VIX by John Griffin & Amin Shams via University Of Texas Houston, We Have An Employment, Wage Growth Problem by Aaron Layman 6-Terrifying Graphs Of America’s Pension Problem by Tyler Durden via ZeroHedge Beat Robo-Advisors At Their Own Game by Andy Hyer via Nasdaq Paying Social Benefits by Buttonwood via The Economist Understanding Today’s Secular Stagnation by Robert J Shiller via Project Syndicate Stock Ownership Down Among All But High Income by Jeffrey Jones via Gallup Valuation: A Less Miserable Measure by Ed Yardeni via Yardeni Research More Risk And Less Return In New Era by Nick Maggiulli via Dollars and Data Hidden Debt & Deficits – 2017 by Joshua Rauh via Hoover Institution 5-Facts American’s Know Nothing Of Money by Catey Hill via Moneyish One Man’s Ceiling Is Another Man’s Floor by Cliff Asness via AQR Capital Management Being Wrong In An Interesting Way by John Hussman via Hussman Funds A “Dead-Cat” Bounce In Stocks? by Dana Lyons via Tumblr “Reward Free Risk” – Here It Is by Jesse Felder via The Felder Report “Anybody who plays the stock market, not as an insider, is like a man buying cows in the moonlight.” – Daniel Drew


 Info Wars



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  • Trump 'evolving' on climate action, pressured by Europeans
    TAORMINA, Italy (AP) -- Forceful face-to-face talks this week with fellow world leaders left President Donald Trump "more knowledgeable" and with "evolving" views about the global climate accord he's threatened to abandon, a top White House official said Friday. Trump also was impressed by their arguments about how crucial U.S. leadership is in supporting international efforts....
  • If FBI wants to talk to Kushner, lawyer says he's ready
    WASHINGTON (AP) -- If the FBI wants to talk to Jared Kushner about his Russian contacts, they won't have to track down the president's son-in-law. Amid reports the FBI is scrutinizing Kushner's encounters, his lawyer says he stands ready to talk to federal investigators as well as Congress about his contacts and his role in Donald Trump's 2016 campaign....
  • At least 28 killed in ambush attack on Christians in Egypt
    CAIRO (AP) -- Masked gunmen ambushed a bus carrying Coptic Christians to a monastery south of Cairo on Friday, killing at least 28 people, and Egypt responded by launching airstrikes against what it said were militant training bases in Libya....
  • Leery of North Korea, US plans first test of ICBM intercept
    WASHINGTON (AP) -- Preparing for North Korea's growing threat, the Pentagon will try to shoot down an intercontinental-range missile for the first time in a test next week. The goal is to more closely simulate a North Korean ICBM aimed at the U.S. homeland, officials said Friday...
  • UK Labour leader links terror to wars as campaign resumes
    LONDON (AP) -- Four days after a suicide bombing plunged Britain into mourning, political campaigning for a general election in two weeks resumed Friday with the main opposition leader linking acts of terrorism at home to foreign wars like the one in Libya....
  • New 'Blue Lives Matter' laws raise concerns among activists
    JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Following a spike in deadly attacks on police, more than a dozen states have responded this year with "Blue Lives Matter" laws that come down even harder on crimes against law enforcement officers, raising concern among some civil rights activists of a potential setback in police-community relations....
  • Sounds of silence? Trump's body language speaks volumes
    TAORMINA, Italy (AP) -- The alpha-male handshake. The deadpan reaction from NATO leaders. The presidential push to the front of the pack....
  • Federal judge tosses out life sentences for DC sniper Malvo
    McLEAN, Va. (AP) -- A federal judge on Friday tossed out two life sentences for one of Virginia's most notorious criminals, sniper Lee Boyd Malvo, and ordered Virginia courts to hold new sentencing hearings....
  • UN Peacekeepers: How a Haiti child sex ring was whitewashed
    COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) -- The general sat on a plastic lawn chair in the garden of his mother's home, the scent of tropical blooms filling the air as he talked about the alleged rape and sodomy of a Haitian teenager by a Sri Lankan peacekeeper....
  • Rocker Chris Cornell remembered as 'voice of our generation'
    LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Music's elite and Hollywood stars remembered Chris Cornell at a somber memorial service Friday that focused on the Soundgarden frontman's love of family and friends as much as it did on his musical achievements as one of rock's leading voices....


Reuters



Google


  • Russian ambassador told Moscow that Kushner wanted secret communications channel with Kremlin - Washington Post
    Washington PostRussian ambassador told Moscow that Kushner wanted secret communications channel with KremlinWashington PostJared Kushner and Russia's ambassador to Washington discussed the possibility of setting up a secret and secure communications channel between Trump's transition team and the Kremlin, using Russian diplomatic facilities in an apparent move to shield ...The Russia investigation: Everything you need to knowCNNREPORT: Trump To Set Up 'War Room' To Repel Russia Probe AttacksHuffPostKushner wanted secure line with Kremlin before inauguration: reportThe HillFox News -New York Daily News -The Atlantic -Miami Heraldall 1,353 news articles »
  • Clinton reappears at Wellesley, again at a crossroads - Washington Post
    Washington PostClinton reappears at Wellesley, again at a crossroadsWashington PostNearly a half-century after she first declared herself to the world as a young woman unafraid to ruffle feathers and challenge authority, Hillary Clinton was back at the very same podium at Wellesley College. And once again, she was at a crossroads in ...Clinton takes aim at Trump during commencement address at alma materFox News5 zings Hillary Clinton aimed at Donald Trump during return to her alma materNJ.comHillary Clinton's Wellesley HomecomingThe AtlanticNBCNews.com -Chicago Tribune -The Hill -HuffPostall 287 news articles »
  • After 2016 Assault, A Coptic Christian Grandmother In Egypt Fights For Justice - NPR
    NPRAfter 2016 Assault, A Coptic Christian Grandmother In Egypt Fights For JusticeNPRAcross a field from the unfinished concrete house where she lives, Suad Thabet can see the spires of the Abu Qarqas monastery. The 70-year-old Coptic Christian grandmother has had trouble sleeping since she was attacked in her nearby Egyptian village ...Egypt launches air raids on Libya after Christians killedReutersEgypt hits 'jihadist camps' after attack on Coptic ChristiansBBC News28 killed in attack on bus carrying Coptic Christians in EgyptLos Angeles TimesThe Atlantic -Washington Post -The Boston Globe -NBCNews.comall 537 news articles »
  • 7th-grader named "most likely to become a terrorist" at school awards ceremony - CBS News
    CBS News7th-grader named "most likely to become a terrorist" at school awards ceremonyCBS NewsSeventh-grader Lizeth Villanueva was shocked as she looked down at the disturbing "honor" listed on a certificate she received at a mock awards ceremony at school last week. "Most likely to be a terrorist," the certificate reads, along with her name in ...Texas Teachers Give Student 'Most Likely To Become A Terrorist' AwardNPRTexas Teacher Disciplined for 'Terrorist' Award for StudentU.S. News & World ReportTeachers under fire for naming student 'most likely to become a terrorist'New York PostNew York Daily News -HuffPost -kfor.com -Breitbart Newsall 108 news articles »
  • Federal judge orders re-sentencing for D.C. sniper Lee Boyd Malvo - New York Daily News
    New York Daily NewsFederal judge orders re-sentencing for D.C. sniper Lee Boyd MalvoNew York Daily NewsA federal judge on Friday tossed out two life sentences for one of Virginia's most notorious criminals, sniper Lee Boyd Malvo, and ordered Virginia courts to hold new sentencing hearings. In his ruling, U.S. District Judge Raymond Jackson in Norfolk ...Federal judge tosses out life terms for DC sniper MalvoUSA TODAYDC sniper to be resentenced after judge overturns life-without-parole rulingsCNNFederal judge tosses life sentences for convicted beltway sniper Lee Boyd MalvoWashington PostFox News -NBCNews.com -New York Times -FOX31 Denverall 42 news articles »
  • Trump's statement on Ramadan is almost entirely about terrorism - Washington Post
    Washington PostTrump's statement on Ramadan is almost entirely about terrorismWashington PostPresident Trump issued a statement on Ramadan — a holy month of fasting and prayer for Muslims around the world — that focused primarily on violence and terrorism. His statement was a stark contrast from the Ramadan message President George W.REPORT: Tillerson Declines To Host Ramadan Event At State DepartmentHuffPostTillerson breaks tradition of holding Ramadan event at State Dept: reportThe HillTrump highlights Manchester bombing, terrorism in Ramadan statementCNNThe Atlantic -Breitbart News -ThinkProgress -New York Daily Newsall 386 news articles »
  • Britain says it has 'large part' of Manchester bomber's network - The Boston Globe
    The Boston GlobeBritain says it has 'large part' of Manchester bomber's networkThe Boston GlobeMANCHESTER, England — British officials expressed confidence on Friday that they had rounded up the bulk of the Manchester bomber's associates, and that their efforts to avert a follow-up attack appeared to be succeeding. “We've got hold of a large ...Ariana Grande announces Manchester benefit concertWPXI PittsburghManchester police make 'significant progress' in bombing probeNew York Daily NewsAriana Grande Pens Powerful Essay After Manchester Attack: ''We Will Not Quit or Operate in Fear''E! OnlineBuzzFeed News -BBC News -NBCNews.com -Sacramento Beeall 19,233 news articles »
  • Republicans rebuke but stand by Montana GOP candidate charged with assault - Washington Post
    Washington PostRepublicans rebuke but stand by Montana GOP candidate charged with assaultWashington PostMISSOULA, Mont. — As Montanans headed to the polls to elect their lone U.S. House member, Republican leaders said that GOP candidate Greg Gianforte's behavior toward a reporter on Wednesday night was unacceptable but should not disqualify him for ...and more »
  • World Leaders Increase Pressure on Trump to Stay in the Paris Accord - New York Times
    New York TimesWorld Leaders Increase Pressure on Trump to Stay in the Paris AccordNew York TimesWorld leaders at the Group of 7 summit meeting on Friday in Taormina, Sicily. Credit Stephen Crowley/The New York Times. TAORMINA, Sicily — World leaders on Friday intensified their pressure on President Trump to keep the United States in the Paris ...Trump's views on climate are 'evolving,' aide says, amid pressure from EuropeansWashington PostA retreat from the Paris climate pact would imperil U.S. interestsThe Hill (blog)World leaders lobby Trump on climate change at G7CNNNPR -Chicago Tribune -Bloomberg -CBS Newsall 250 news articles »
  • Trump brings his solo act to Europe - Politico
    PoliticoTrump brings his solo act to EuropePoliticoTAORMINA, Sicily — Days before President Donald Trump embarked on his first foreign trip, national security adviser H.R. McMaster said the administration's message to allies would be: "America first" does not mean "America alone." But over the course ...Trump's abandonment of NATO in BrusselsWashington PostPresident Trump passes his first test on the world stageCNNTrump Says NATO Allies Don't Pay Their Share. Is That True?New York TimesLos Angeles Times -The Atlanticall 2,293 news articles »



The Free Speech Wars Have Begun

 


Horoscopes are Cancer

Buzzfeed is Cancer

CNN is Cancer

MTV is Cancer

Feminism is Cancer

Is Cancer


I have not been observing @MeTV  OTA (Over The Air) whatsoever the last month or so since @KLAXTV’s transmitter went to low power due to lightening strike.

klax

I spy giggles.  #Svengoolie


Still making pigs fly.


A World Mix of Headlines

Results May Vary


The Electronic Civil War is the Battle Of Our Times


“For those in the conservative movement to think that you’re going to change minds only by preaching to the choir, you don’t understand how media works. So that’s probably the most potent weapon out there is to go fight the fire, go towards the fire.” – Andrew Breitbart


Righteous Indignation: Excuse Me While I Save the World!


Hating Breitbart


The army of the emboldened and gleefully ill-informed is growing.


It’s a democracy, and the reason why the conservative movement loses is because it believes that it is elite, that the smartest in its midst who have gone to the right schools and who have worked at the right think tanks and have the right opinions and the right friends can run it for the rest of America. That’s why I’m a Tea Party adherent over a Republican or conservative establishment adherent.


My goal is to try to weaponize the American people, try to weaponize the conservative movement, try to weaponize the underground conservative Hollywood movement, to weaponize as many people in the center-right country to try to rectify a generation-plus long problem that has been absolute media bias, absolute media used by the Democratic Party as a tool to defeat conservatives



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