Sunday, December 14, 2008

Losing Louisiana

Losing Louisiana - Times-Picayune -

"The price of protection is staggering, but the cost of inaction is unimaginable."

Somebody please give me a coastal law job so I can help!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Congratulations, Liz McCartney!

Liz McCartney, cofounder of the St. Bernard Project has been voted CNN's "Hero of the Year."

St. Bernard Project cofounder Liz McCartney voted CNN's 'Hero of the Year' - Walker, TV Ranger - Times-Picayune -

Genius idea of the century: teach kids about money!!!!!

Yes ! Yes ! Yes ! Somebody listen to this guy please!

A College Sophomore Solves the Financial Crisis - The Daily Beast: "The Jump$tart Coalition found the following in its annual survey of high school seniors:

* Only 48% understand that a credit card holder who only pays the minimum amount on monthly card balances will pay more in annual finance charges than a card holder who pays off the balance in full each month. That level of ignorance can easily lead to thousands in interest charges each year, and can easily be the difference between financial security and destitution.
* Only 40% realized that they could lose their health insurance if a parent suddenly lost his/her job....

In the current economic environment, increased financial literacy is absolutely essential for people to understand the issues as consumers and as voters. No one should leave high school without a solid foundation of practical financial skills. Students should be able to understand credit card offers, evaluate investments, compare insurance products, and understand their rights and responsibilities as consumers. Trust me, it's a lot more useful than Latin."

Quick Quips on the Nature of Government

Here's one:

"There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences."

The Capital Grill: Potent Quotables: P.J. O'Rourke

These are pretty libertarian sounding, and I'm inclined to agree with all of them.
Any thoughts?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Bailout Balogna. Can you believe it?

The mainstream media narrative goes like this: Katrina recovery has struggled because local Louisiana politicians were inept and unable to provide oversight. So much money has been wasted because of lack of oversight... I'm not going to dispute that.

But you would think the federal government-- so brilliant, uncorrupted and efficient compared to our "backwards state" of Louisiana would do things a little more carefully, wouldn't you? You would be wrong. Turns out there is hardly any oversight in the spending of the billions in this humongous national bailout!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Take a little break to restore your faith in humanity.

Fifty People, One Question: Restored from Benjamin Reece on Vimeo.

Giving a shout out to Ben and Sarah- and what I think is a great video!

The New Orleans 100

The New Orleans 100

A great list of good news that has come out of New Orleans since Katrina. This list links to lots of fascinating projects!

(Oh yeah, and I'm doing fine but super busy).

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Katrina: Unnatural Disaster

The United States Army Corps of Engineers isn't evil; it's underfunded and not watched over carefully. We can't just blame them for all our problems. However, the Corps does need meaningful oversight. That will take political willpower.

With Gustav on the way, we should all be painfully aware of how vulnerable so many levees are across our country. Of course, levees are not the only answer. We also need coastal restoration in Louisiana and smart building and zoning strategies.

Anyways, all my prayers are going out to everyone in Gustav's path.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Coming up: Three Years After Katrina- 8/29/08

Three years after the storm, many obstacles to recovery and other problems still remain for the Gulf Coast. More than ever, while campaigns are going full blown, it's important that we keep what happened in memory. Here are five easy things you can do to commemorate 8/29/05.

1) Get Informed. There are several great websites you can visits to learn the facts about Katrina, what went wrong, and the recovery efforts. Two of my favorites is are's page and America's Wetland.
Of course there's also google.

2) Write/call/email your congressmen. This is so easy and it actually does make a difference. You can either write your own letter about how you want better levees, funding for coastal restoration, a plan for Fema, etc. Or you go to websites like the Gulf Restoration Network for prewritten text. Also, dropping a line to McCain or Obama won't hurt!

Contact your house members.

Contact your senators (including Mac and Oby).

3) Talk to your friends about Katrina. Easy. You can even start a heated debate, but the point is that we don't want people to forget. Especially now that campaigns are in full swing!

4) Attend or host an event commemorating the third anniversary of Katrina.

5) Volunteer your time or donate your bucks to help spread awareness/ aid restoration efforts.

Check out
The Gulf Restoration Network
This group is concerned with levees all over the nation- you'd be surprised how many are inadequate.

The New Orleans Musician Relief Fund


Make it Right
This is the one with Brad Pitt.

just to name a few.

Thanks for standing with the Gulf Coast!!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Thursday, April 03, 2008

A little love for the law

So I have recently had a couple of experiences that make feel optimistic about my future.

1) The other day a friend called with a legal problem. In the end, there were no concrete steps I could take, but just being able to research and possibly help someone with a problem was absolutely invigorating. I think I'm just getting weary of the academic grind and the theoretical stuff that I memorize for the exams. Maybe I just need the sense of purpose that only a problem to be solved can bring.

2) I attended Family Court yesterday, as a part of the Family Law class requirement. I watched the judge deal with ex-couples looking to set child support. It was great because I got to see her apply the law in a human way. She went by the book, but also made a clear effort to show both parties that their concerns mattered. For example, although support could have been set (legally speaking) without the father's presence in one case, she told the attorney for the state that if at all possible, he should get the father in court instead of just sending him a piece of paper in the end. In another example, she told a couple that the situation "was no longer about them" and was about the child. She considered the other factors in peoples' lives but was firm. She was truly a force for good. I was impressed.

Yay! Now, back to the books. Ha.

In the meantime, I'm pretty excited about Raul's recital in the Ridge this Saturday. And about finishing off the second year of law school.