Tag: New Orleans

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Some time ago, someone (@mattbalzer, perhaps?) suggested that we should have a large Ricochet Meetup in New Orleans one day.  At the time I was already working on the big meetup for 2020, which was in South Dakota’s Black Hills.  And I had already decided that 2021’s extravaganza was going to be on Kentucky’s Bourbon […]

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On this episode of the AEI Events Podcast, New Orleans’ Mayor Mitch Landrieu reflects on his experiences with governing at the local level and the progress New Orleans has made during his time in office. Having inherited a city struggling with numerous challenges, he recounted how his administration worked to rebuild a foundation for the future through a method he described as “the will and the way.” Rather than trying to restore the city to the way it was before, Mayor Landrieu said the people of New Orleans found the will to rebuild the city as it should have been by taking an “everybody-in” approach to enact reforms, insisting on vertical and horizontal integration.

In a conversation with AEI’s Norman J. Ornstein, Mayor Landrieu talked about how New Orleans has taken steps to address long-standing divisions, such as reforming policing practices to improve relations between police and communities of color. Contrasting federal government with local government, Mayor Landrieu said mayors have no choice but to overcome various divisions in order to move forward because they deal with concrete problems that affect the people they personally interact with in their day-to-day lives. He emphasized that innovation and change at the city level can have national impacts.

The Schoolbuses of Katrina

 

While we are still chattering about Hurricane Harvey and keeping an eye on Hurricane Irma, I saw a couple of comments that are worth a follow-up post of its own.

You all remember how we watched the flooding in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, and how we all saw the fleet of schoolbuses that were inundated instead of serving to evacuate the City. Evidently, those pictures were very memorable, but not nearly as memorable as the actual narrative of events. There is plenty to fault the City of New Orleans for, and especially there fault to be laid at the feet of Mayor Nagin and Governor Blanco, but I do not fault them for the schoolbuses.

Evacuating a big city is a huge problem. Especially so for New Orleans, since there are not many highway evacuation routes available. The likelihood is that an evacuation would cause lots of traffic crash deaths and lead to a politician becoming a laughingstock if the hurricane does not turn out to be so damaging as the weather forecasters had made it out to be. Everyone over 50 on the coast remembers occasions when they were told to evacuate, decided not to, and then experienced a bad storm that had not warranted evacuation.

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Jake Banks is an Assistant U. S. Attorney now assigned to a special gang crimes unit in New Orleans. The truth is that he has become associated with a secret black ops group hidden deep within the government and has been taking training courses all over the country for the last eight months. His boss […]

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It had started out as such a fun weekend.        My youngest sister, MC, and her husband were running the Hood to Coast relay in Portland, and one of their chase van drivers had bailed at the last minute.   I’d never seen Portland, so I volunteered to fly out and fill in.   Our […]

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I was six years old, the first time I saw the French Quarter.  En route to to see our cousins in Pensacola, we stayed for one night in New Orleans – – ostensibly, because it was a good stopping point on our drive from Tulsa – – but primarily, I think, because of my father’s […]

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A Trip Home (Part II)

 

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How do your earliest childhood memories present themselves? A taste of certain types of food perhaps? A picture? A sensation of some sort? In my case, it’s music. Dixieland Jazz, to be specific. Children love candy, after all, and the sweet sound of a clarinet flirting with a dazzling trumpet melody, while the trombone growls like Mike the Tiger on the prowl, all while the drums keep happy, syncopated time, became the sweetest confectionery to my young imagination. The allure always reached its crowning moment on our trips to New Orleans, where the sugary music drifted through the elaborate old buildings and lacy balconies of the French Quarter, stoking my interest and delighting my senses.

How, while well into your 50s, do you top memories like that? Simple. Share them with the love of your life. My fiancée, her delightful mom and I took a quick cab ride from the train station to the Le Pavilion hotel, on Poydras Street. I had been emailing the concierge during our train ride that day, making sure certain arrangements were attended to properly. As always, the staff at this hotel was on its game.