11 February 2007

emily metzgar's new day la podcast w/ elliott stonecipher

UPDATE: 08 february 2008 - central la politics blog has posted their interview from this morning with mr. stonecipher see interview with elliott stonecipher re: problems of independence and transparency with gov. jindal's ethics plans!


emily metzgar has a new feature on her blog called the "new day la podcast." for this weeks episode (see link) which happens to be episode 2, ms. metzgar interviews "shreveport-based demographic analyst elliott stonecipher."
some of the things we learn from mr. stonecipher include:
demographics is the study of a populations vital statistics and the study disproportionately of the characteristics of all of us, such as age, income, education attainment level and so forth. this is further broken down by geographic areas such as shreveport or baton rouge or louisiana or america.

mr. stonecipher says that he concentrates on three variables in louisiana that he calls the "purest study" and they are birth, death and migration.

"demographics is destiny"
"theres no question about it, louisiana has been caught in a downward spiral for going on three decades" says mr. stonecipher. the u.s. census bureau estimated shortly (july 2005) before hurricane katrina struck, that louisiana would gain a net population increase of 7.5% which equates to 333,000 people by 2030. however, a great majority of that number has already been lost. "at least 175,000" are still outside of louisiana according to mr. stonecipher's estimates. louisiana's ratio of births to deaths is 1.58 births to a death, which is about the national average. the national average is 1.67 to 1. but louisiana is losing population because of the (non-katrina) outmigration which has been going on for three decades. people are leaving louisiana far disproportionately compared to surrounding states and its worsening. in the year before katrina hit new orleans (orleans parish) rate of outmigration was actually peaking. in the 1960 census new orleans had just under 628,00 people and by the time katrina hit it had 454,000 "and change." the year before katrina hit 1.6% of orleans parish population left. thats the fastest rate of outmigration of any year over the past thirty years. mr. stonecipher says that generally these figures work for the state as well.

governor and legislature cover-up
"louisiana simply does not discuss - our government, our leaders do not discuss this issue. you will not hear any debate of this issue in the state legislature. you will never hear our governor mention it. from a public policy stand point we simply do not adjust for our future based on this destiny and it is our destiny. how in the world can we from a public policy standpoint not adjust to it?" - elliot stonecipher to emily metzgar.

mr. stonecipher says that the "myth" spread by a lot of people in new orleans and in louisiana state government is that these people are simply migrating to the northshore. or, they just went to somewhere else close by. mr. stonecipher says that is simply not true and is supported by census figures. "there is no state in the nation that does worse than louisiana in the category of choice" meaning people choosing to come to or stay in louisiana "where choice is concerned louisiana does as bad a job as you can do." so mr. stonecipher says that its not about "births and deaths its about migration and its going out."

demographics of the people who leave
mr. stonecipher says that the people who are leaving are the very people who disproportionately help to grow a state. not just in nominal numbers of people. they grow the tax base, they grow the public schools. they grow everything that stems from what younger better educational attainment level people do. thats who we are losing. mr. stonecipher says that we are making no plans to deal with being an older state. mr. stonecipher says that we are a state that is withering on the vine and those of us who are left are going to have to bear an ever increasing burden of everything it takes for a society to support itself. government continues to grow but our population doesnt.

mr. stonecipher says that we need to go back to the drawing board with these numbers and projections and think through "are we really o. k. with not growing?" because if we're not then we have to provide incentives for people to come here. the problem is that we are not configured in a tax and spend context to "incent" anyone to come here. everything about louisiana - people can get on the internet and compare louisiana to neighboring states and everything is a disincentive and thats why we do as poor as anybody in the area of the choice of where people live.

stark destiny
mr. stonecipher says "if people in louisiana who are paying the tab really could see where we are headed in the absence of huge changes in public policy then the outmigration problem of course is just going to get worse fewer and fewer people will stay and of course thats the real point here...state government has to address this problem and i think we are going to have to go back to the drawing board and thats a constitutional convention."

hold on. not so fast with that constitutional convention business. from what we have observed of the louisiana legislature just since hurricanes katrina and rita is that this is the most worthless bunch of an excuse for a state legislature in history. these are the last people that we need tampering with of all things the state constitution. this lot is not to be trusted to do anything thats not self serving and meant to line their own pockets or the pockets of their family and friends. nothing is ever going to change in this state until the people throw all these bums - republicans and democrats (or as we prefer to call them carpetbaggers and scalawags) out and elect decent honorable men and women. the twist though is that louisianians love corruption. we are corruption. the sad part is that we louisianians dont know any different and dont want to do any better. its not just the state legislature thats corrupt its also the city governments, the parish governments, the courts system and the educational system. we suspect that mr. stonecipher merely wants to throw out one unfriendly bunch of crooks to install a more friendly other bunch of crooks.

note: ms. metzgars very first podcast was with professional politician, current congressman, member of the subversive rhodes scholars and perennial louisiana governor candidate piyush "bobby" jindal. as we've posted about piyush before see media whoring for piyush and as we still maintain, anyone who is promoting him should be considered working for and a part of the criminal network. so the discerning listener is cautioned to take these podcasts for what they are worth.
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