The circus that is Louisiana State Treasurer John Kennedy came to town tonight. Once again the caravan of misinformation, false claims, phony predictions and cheap shots regarding the new LSU University Medical Center were unpacked for the performance ( an elaboration of the particulars in this matter can be read at Hospitals and Restaurants). This post, though, is aimed at addressing an even more ominous trend than the mendacity of politicians like John Kennedy and his henchman in this endeavour, David Vitter.
It is enough to give democracy and town halls a bad name. What is? Why, staged shows like this one. It was ginned up to look like a public meeting, but was in fact more like scripted theatre. Virtually everyone there appeared to have learned of the event by way of a very limited notification process controlled by the circus itself, so as to insure an appreciative audience. Of course, all the media in town seemed to have been summoned to dutifully fawn over this charade.
Happily, Greater New Orleans AFL-CIO President Robert Hammond had managed to get wind of it, and invited me to accompany him. Mr. Hammond, as usual, did an outstanding job at the microphone straightening out much of the misinformation coming from Kennedy.
But in a sense the larger and more important matter comes down to this: When is a public meeting not a public meeting? Why, when it is a public fraud, like many a politician.