Clay Jones Comic Strip for February 26, 2023

The Livingston Parish Council is the latest to knuckle under to the HYSTERIA being spread by those who would impose their version of decency and appropriateness while inflicting a potentially lethal blow to the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

These are, of course, the same individuals who somehow hold the Second Amendment up as some sort of sacrosanct right, a beacon of liberty somehow etched in stone.

The Livingston council is the latest to cave to the wishes of the likes of Ron DeSantis and Jeff Landry in deciding what books shall be made available to impressionable children in public libraries.

Strange, I can’t recall a single incident of a library book killing anyone, which is more than I can say about the ease with which anyone may obtain an AR-15 and go on a shooting spree at some random school, shopping center, or night club.

The danger that literature poses to our children has somehow crept into the mindset of the Republican Party as a campaign issue more critical than say, deregulation of railroads, banks, and Wall Street (we do remember the failure of all those banks in 1988, don’t we?) and certainly more important than the wholesale slaughter of school children, Asians, gays, and anyone else who gets in the way of some demented nutcase.

Of course, the Republicans are quick to point out that it’s not a gun problem, but a MENTAL HEALTH issue. That being the case, then someone please explain why BOBBY JINDAL, Texas Gov. GREG ABBOTT, former Florida Gov. RICK SCOTT, and Republicans in Congress CUT FUNDING for mental health treatment? (Isn’t it ironic that upon leaving office, Jindal enhanced his personal bottom line by JOINING THE BOARD of a company that thrived financially on Medicaid revenue?).

So, as a diversionary tactic, library books are being made the villains in the never-ending struggle to force everyone to comply with some arbitrary code of decency by allowing a faceless few to decide what we are allowed to read – or more accurately, what our children are allowed to read.

It just seems to me that that’s a decision that should be left to parents, not to some bureaucratic body that answers to no one. It comes down to the question of just who will be the person or persons to make the final decision on what is and what is appropriate?

When we cede that responsibility over to government, isn’t that contrary to what the “less government” Republicans have been advocating all this time? After all, they’re the ones carping about “woke” this and “woke” that when in reality, it’s the Republicans who are actually the “woke” advocates in this equation.

I mean, after all, it was a Republican legislator in Missouri who introduced a bill that would have forbade female legislators to appear on the House floor with arms bared. So much for the women’s right to bare arms.

And Marjorie Taylor Greene, who wants a “national divorce” of red and blue states with the added stipulation that anyone from a blue state who moves to a red state will not be allowed to vote for five years – but without the same proviso for a red state citizen moving to a blue state.

So, bottom line, whether it’s in Congress, a state legislature, or a parish council, it’s all about control.

It doesn’t matter to these people that the kiddos can access porn on their home computers or on their cellphones. It doesn’t matter that they can take “inappropriate” pictures on their phones and send them to friends of the opposite sex.

Nor does it matter that there is a book chock-full of violence, adultery, genocide, disgusting practices and other “inappropriate” material for kids that is on the back of every pew in every church in every parish in Louisiana.

As just one example, read Ezekiel 23:20-21 carefully and slowly. Then go to Solomon and read chapters 1, 4, 7:7-8, and chapter 8, verse 10. Read aloud, slowly and deliberately and then tell me if that is “appropriate” for children.

You see, folks, this isn’t about decency. It’s about control – control of what we read, who can and cannot vote, who can marry, where we can live and go to school, and even what the news media may REPORT.

And that, folks, is the very definition of FASCISM.


Marjorie Taylor Greene is the living embodiment of why cousins should never marry.

The woman would flunk an IQ test.

She is the quintessential dumb blonde joke.

She not only resembles, but could well be, the missing link.

She’s proof that you can’t buy class. In her case, she can’t even rent it.

She’s the one person in Congress who can make Clay Higgins seem intelligent and KKK Scalise appear tolerant and broad-minded.

She was a train wreck long before East Palestine, Ohio, and every bit as toxic.

Unfortunately, she’s got lots of company with the likes of Josh Hawley, Matt Gaetz, Gym Jordan, George Santos, Lauren Boebert, Ron Johnson, John Kennedy, Rick Scott, and the aforementioned Scalise and Higgins. Even Kari Lake, though a failed candidate for Arizona governor, keeps up with the denial drumbeat. And of course, there’s Ron DeSantis lurking on the sidelines.

You would almost think that Jim Jones was alive and dispensing Kool-Aid to Republicans in Congress these days.

And before anyone goes there, I want to say that I’m very much aware that there are good Republicans out there. Some are in my family and I would never discourage them from following their consciences. By the same token, I know of Democrats who have served time for their misdeeds or resigned in disgrace.

I also know if you go back 50 years to the Nixon administration, you will find far, far more federal indictments and prison sentences in the five Republican administrations than you will in the four Democratic administrations. The BREAKDOWN in indictments during that time is 335 to three.

But in my nearly 80 years, I have never seen such a concentration of evil, ignorance, and downright incompetence as exists in today’s Republican Party. It’s as if there were an epidemic of malevolence turned loose on an astonishingly large number of members of the former Party of Lincoln.

But back to MTG. This mouth-breathing, Qanon-loving moron unbelievably suggested this week that America needs a “national divorce” that would separate the country by red states and blue states. “Everyone I talk to says this,” she tweeted.

Now, I don’t know who this so-called “everyone” is but I suspect it’s the same as the “many people” who communicate with the former guy on certain issues. In other circles, they are referred to as “imaginary friends,” or, “ghost employees.”

She says Democrats are putting “America last,” but to suggest a “national divorce” would seem to be to be accomplishing just that. She is all for just trashing the Constitution which created this country. That, by the way, is the same Constitution that the NRA falls back on in defending the proliferation of the country’s gun culture. But that’s another story.

Regardless, she obviously hasn’t thought this all the way through. For instance, what criteria will be used to determine red and blue states? In her own state of Georgia, nine of 14 House members are Republican but both US senators are Democrats. And Biden defeated Trump in that state. So, is Georgia red or blue? Oh, the governor’s Republican? Okay, the governor of Louisiana is a Democrat but five of six House members and both senators are Republican. MTG also didn’t take into consideration that the political winds shift and what is blue today could well be red next year – and vice versa. In short, her call for a “national divorce” is little more than the ramblings of an unhinged idiot.

She claims to be opposed to the so-called “woke” culture. But just who is attempting to re-write history books – and even certain math books? Who is doing everything possible to censor which books public libraries may offer? Who is it who introduced a bill in the Missouri legislature that would ban women’s right to bare arms? Who proposes a “don’t say gay” policy for an entire state? Those would be Republicans, one and all.

MTG’s latest rant ranks right up there with her Jewish space lasers and a few other of her nit-witted conspiracy theories. She’s an idiot, pure and simple. And she was reelected easily just four months ago. Go figure. I guess it’s the same mentality as expressed by a reader in response to one of my criticisms of Higgins: as long as he votes conservative, nothing else matters.

That’s it in a nutshell. Other things, like morals, intellect, compassion, honesty, and fairness don’t matter. Just vote conservative.

And now, you can add the name of Alaska State Rep. David Eastman to the list of Republican lunatics.

If it’s humanly possible for anyone to surpass MTG or Boebert on the dumb-ass meter, this man did it, in spades.

The Alaska legislator actually SAID during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on adverse childhood experiences that there might be economic benefits in cases where child abuse was fatal.

Here’s the actual quote: “It can be argued, periodically, that it’s actually a cost savings because that child is not going to need any of those government services that they might otherwise be entitled to receive and need based on growing up in this type of environment.”

That prompted Tervor Storrs, president and CEO of the Alaska Children’s Trust, to ask, “Can you say that again? Did you say ‘a benefit for society’?”

That was too much, even for Alaska’s House of Representatives, which has a 21-16 Republican majority. By an overwhelming 35-1 vote, Eastman was censured with his colleagues calling his remarks “despicable,” “atrocious,” and “indefensible.”

Now I’m certain that Eastman, who calls himself pro-life, was not suggesting that abused children be allowed to die. But what I’m equally certain of is that so many of these elected Republicans are so narrowly focused in their perception of reality that they actually allow the stupid to spill out of their mouths in the belief that they’re actually being practical and productive.

Whatever, Eastman’s callous remark, had it been made on the national stage, would have far overshadowed MTG’s divorce proclamation. Unfortunately, both statements, along with those of most of the others I’ve named here, are fast becoming the daily norm for the Republican Party.

We used to call that putting the mouth in motion before the brain was in gear.

A former co-worker described it as “letting your alligator mouth overload your jaybird ass.”

If you visit the State Capitol during a legislative session, one thing you’ll be certain to notice is the very visible presence of Louisiana State Police (LSP) hanging around outside House and Senate committee rooms as well as upstairs in the Capitol rotunda and further up, in the governor’s fourth-floor suite of offices.

It’s understandable that security would be stepped up during the session which annually attracts throngs of tourists, demonstrators, and lobbyists to the house that Huey built. With so many people milling about, there’s always the chance of some misguided nutcase attempting to make a statement of some sort.

After all, more than half-a-century ago, back in 1970, there was a dynamite bomb that exploded in the Senate chambers that was linked to an organized labor dispute. It was a Sunday night and the chamber was empty, but still…

Then, on Jan. 6, 2021, there was the riotous insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, an outrage that remains stuck in the craw of a lot of people (except for those who refuse to acknowledge it as more than a “routine tourist excursion”).

And so it was that State Senate President Page Cortez (R-Lafayette) filed SB 490 in the 2022 regular session that easily passed both houses and was signed into law by Gov. John Bel Edwards as Act 507 to create a new Louisiana Capitol Police Force to provide security for the Capitol complex, including the nearby Pentagon Barracks, where quite a few senators and representatives (55, to be precise) call home at steeply discounted rental rates during the session and when they’re in town for committee meetings.

The other 89 members are on their own for housing – and security after hours.

Cortez is also chair of the Joint Legislative CAPITOL SECURITY COUNCIL. Other members include Sens. Gerald Boudreaux (D-Lafayette), Jay Luneau (D-Alexandria), Barry Milligan (R-Shreveport), and Beth Mizel (R-Franklinton), and Reps. Clay Schexnayder (R-Gonzales, vice-chair), Larry Selders (D-Baton Rouge), Joseph Stagni (R-Kenner), John Stefanski (R-Crowley), and Debbie Villio (R-Kenner).

Among the duties spelled out in the act are responsibility to “oversee law enforcement and physical security for the areas within the state capitol complex…that are occupied and utilized by the members, officers, and staff of the legislative branch of state government, including areas of ingress and egress for those areas as necessary,” and to “oversee law enforcement and physical security for the legislature, its members, officers, and staff at any official meeting or function or the legislature, and its committees regardless of location.” (Emphasis added)

Some of those “functions” consist of after-hours parties and cookouts at the Pentagon Barracks where coincidentally, eight of the 10 Capitol Security Council members reside during the session. Those include Cortez, Schexnayder, Boudreaux, Luneau, Milligan, Mizell, Stagni, and Stefanski.

The anticipated pay for the new police chief is in the area of $135,000 to head up a force of about two dozen officers. The target is for all personnel to be in place by the start of the 2023 legislative session, which begins April 10.

So, basically, what we have here is the creation of a new weaponized police force devoted almost exclusively to the protection of legislators and special protection for 55 occupants of the Pentagon Barracks and their guests during off-hours events, including, one would presume, tailgate parties and cookouts at the Pentagon Barracks for LSU home football games. And the taxpayers will foot the bill at $2 million per year, the anticipated budget for the new agency.

That’s what happens whenever the legislature gets its hands on a little surplus cash – they find ways to spend it on inconsequential matters rather than on education, the environment, health care, or on fighting poverty, obesity, coastal erosion, or flood control.

Besides LSP security during the session, there is already in existence another 26-person force assigned exclusively to the Capitol detail year-round. The Department of Public Safety (DPS) has a separate police force from LSP but which requires its officers to meet the same standards as State Troopers. They must be P.O.S.T (Police Officers Standards and Training) certified and they possess the same arrest powers as their much higher-paid counterparts at LSP. Their headquarters are actually located within the Capitol complex already.

From the DPS web page: http://www.lsp.org/dps_police.html:

DPS Police was established in 1974. At that time, DPS Police was charged with providing security at the Louisiana State Police Headquarters Compound and supervising inmates assigned to the State Police Inmate Barracks. This service is now provided by the Physical Security section.

In 1996, the Louisiana State Police increased the scope of DPS Police responsibility to include providing security in and around the State Capitol. This section is known as Capitol Detail. In addition to the State Capitol, officers are posted in many of the state buildings. Officers are also responsible for making patrols of the Capitol Complex and responding to calls for service in and around the state buildings and garages.

The department utilizes a state-of-the-art communications room equipped with the latest video equipment necessary to monitor the State Capitol Complex and the Louisiana State Police Headquarters Complex.

In 2010, the “old” Capitol Police was transferred from the Division of Administration and placed under the State Police. This unit, now known as DPS/State Facility Security, is responsible for security in and around all state facilities located outside of the Capitol Complex.

This includes facilities located in New Orleans, Lafayette, Alexandria, Shreveport, and Monroe. In 2015, these sections were combined and placed under the command of the Capitol Detail/State Facility Security Captain.


  • Enforces all applicable state laws.
  • Provides security at the Louisiana State Police Headquarters Complex, State Capitol Complex and outlying state buildings to ensure the safety of those who either work or visit those facilities.
  • Provides crowd control during demonstrations and parades, directs traffic flow, and investigates traffic crashes.
  • Provides dignitary protection.
  • Supervises Department of Corrections inmates assigned to the Louisiana State Police Barracks.
  • Investigates all criminal activity that occurs in and around State Police Headquarters, Capitol Complex, and various state buildings throughout the state.

So, why not just hire additional officers for DPS? Good question.

In addition, Baton Rouge police, constables and sheriff’s deputies also have authority within the Capitol complex. With all those law enforcement officers, we might actually see cops outnumbering lobbyists during the session, which certainly would be a first.

Initially, 11 people submitted applications for the position of CHIEF but that list has been whittled down to three: Frederick Thomas, a district commander for the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office; Terry Alario, Jr., a special agent/operations officer with the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office, and Lt. Rodney Hyatt, who has been employed since 2017 in evidence control for LSP.

Hyatt, readers may remember, was among the four state troopers who were disciplined for unauthorized travel back in 2016 in connection with their taxpayer-paid state auto trip to San Diego via the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas.

An internal investigation resulted in Hyatts’ demotion from lieutenant to sergeant but that was overturned by the Louisiana State Police Commission. Hyatt based his appeal on his claim that then-State Police Superintendent Mike Edmonson knew of and approved the trip and made Hyatt and his three state police companions on the trip the scapegoats once the trip became public.

The State Ethics Commission likewise exonerated Edmonson, meaning that no one bore responsibility for the four troopers taking a state vehicle to San Diego for the sole purpose of attending a conference to see Edmonson receive an award.

Alario, who is currently in charge of security at the AG’s main office in Baton Rouge as well as its satellite offices throughout the state, is currently working under his third attorney general. He began under Charles Foti and has remained first with Buddy Caldwell and now Jeff Landry. His current salary is $94,723 per year.

His staying power could be attributed in part to his pedigree. He is the nephew of former Senate President John Alario, who has managed to have several of his family members employed by the state, including his daughter-in-law, Dionne, who was Administrative Program Manager for DPS. She was hired to supervise DPS employees in Baton Rouge while working from her home in Westwego at a salary of $69,222.

John Alario’s son, JOHN W. ALARIO, also is employed by DPS as director of its Liquefied Petroleum Gas Commissionat at a salary of $124,384.

Anyone care to take odds on who the new chief of the new Louisiana Capitol Police Force will be?

While Attorney General Jeff Landry was simultaneously running for governor and peeking over the shoulders of children as they checked out library books, his office damn near let a man convicted of a triple killing in Lake Charles go free.

Landry, who also involved himself deeply in the stolen election conspiracy pushed by supporters of Donald Trump, apparently was too busy with his anti-abortion, anti-First Amendment, library book monitoring campaign for governor to dispatch anyone to the parole hearing for Thomas Frank Cisco, 54.

The 1997 murders of Stacie Reeves, 26, Marty LeBouef, 21, and Nicole Guidry, 14, went unsolved for more than a year before Cisco was arrested. He was tried and sentenced to death but his conviction was overturned by the Louisiana Supreme Court because of a conflict of interest in the DA’s office and the prosecution was taken over by the attorney general’s office, then headed by Buddy Caldwell.

As a result, Cisco, who just 13 years ago, was sentenced to 90 years following a plea bargain negotiated by Caldwell’s office, was granted parole earlier this month but only the alert actions of the Calcasieu Parish District Attorney’s office managed to thwart his early release.

All of which brings up another question. When Cisco was sentenced in March 2010, Assistant Attorney General David Caldwell, the son of Buddy Caldwell, assured the media and the families of the three victims of the brutal slaying at a Lake Charles convenience store that Cisco “will die in Angola.” Prosecutors said at the time that Cisco would not become eligible for release from prison until he was 104 years old.

So, how is it that he was eligible for parole after only 13 years? What happened to spending the rest of his life in the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola?

Regardless, Landry flirted with malfeasance by not having a representative at Cisco’s parole hearing. Because of that neglect of duty, a convicted (actually an admitted killer, since he’d pled guilty) was only hours from walking out of prison a free man.

Only the actions of District Attorney Stephen Dwight prevented a major fiasco.

Following the parole board’s approval but before Cisco’s release, Dwight requested a review of all disciplinary records for Cisco – a routine request you’d think a second-year law student would know to make – and learned that Cisco had not told the parole board about an infraction involving contraband to which he had pled guilty.

Because the infraction occurred prior to the time of the parole hearing, it immediately negated his eligibility for parole and the board’s approval was rescinded.

“The Attorney General in 2010 is the one that actually pled him to the manslaughter,” Dwight said. “The DA’s office originally convicted him with first degree murder, and he was sentenced to [the] death penalty. When the Attorney General’s office got it when it came back on appeal, they pled it to manslaughter, three counts of manslaughter, looking at over 100 years, and that’s when he (Caldwell) made the assurance to Calcasieu Parish [that Cisco] would serve the rest of his life in jail, and that almost didn’t happen.”

With only Justice Jeffrey Victory dissenting, the State Supreme Court threw out the conviction because Lake Charles attorney Evelyn M. Oubre, who defended Cisco, also represented Calcasieu Parish sheriff’s deputy Donald “Lucky” DeLouche, director of the sheriff department’s Violent Crimes Task Force, and his wife in a family law matter, meaning there was a possibility that she represented both the defendant and the state’s primary prosecution witness (DeLouche) simultaneously.

Dwight now says that he doesn’t believe the conflict doesn’t exist anymore and because the crime originated in Calcasieu Parish, “we believe we are the prosecuting agency now.” He said his office wants the file back. “We don’t have it right now but we are requesting that that prosecution come back to our office.”

He added that his office is always present for every parole hearing. “Our office is always present for a parole hearing. We are there to oppose a parole hearing or we give our input to the parole board to let them know if we approve it or not approve it, and we are there in person when we do that, we will do that.” He said if his office gets the file back, he will continue to attend all hearings. “The process worked here because they did realize what happened and corrected the wrong.”

Attempts were made to reach Landry for a comment but apparently, he had gone to the library.

I’m not too excited at the prospect of Joe Biden running for reelection. He is, after all, 80 years old (just a year older than I and I am acutely aware that, my lack of qualifications aside, I’m in no physical or mental shape to endure the rigors of a job so demanding).

Having said that, however, I find the criticism of Louisiana Republican Party Chairman Louis Gurvich to be one of the thinnest arguments I’ve seen yet by anyone purporting to be a leader. In fact, if I didn’t know better, I’d swear that his essay yesterday was written for The Onion but mistakenly ended up on The Hayride blog.

While I earnestly hope that someone else will step up to carry the Democratic banner (just as I hope the Republican candidate in 2024 won’t be named Trump or DeSantis), I fail to see how Gurvich could ever stretch credulity to the point of calling Biden the “most immoral and corrupt of all presidents” in light of Gurvich’s own party’s recent occupant of the Oval Office.

It’s not rhetoric or embellishment to declare that Trump was, hands down, the “most immoral and corrupt of all presidents.” To be unable or unwilling to see that should instantly disqualify Gurvich from serving as chairman of any political party.

But he didn’t stop there. He accused Biden of committing plagiarism in his repeated mantra “finish the job.” Gurvich claims that Biden lifted that phrase from “one of the most important speeches ever given by Winston Churchill, in the darkest days of 1942.”


But let’s look at Trump’s oft-repeated catchphrase “America First.” Do you think that was original with Donnybrook of Orange?

Nope. Besides being the utterance of Charles Lindbergh, a Nazi sympathizer during the lead-up to WWII, it was more recently the slogan of one David Duke, leader of the Ku Klux Klan and, depending on the timeframe, mouthpiece for the American Nazi Party.

But even before that, in the 1920s, the words “America First” were splashed across banners carried in parades and rallies by the KKK.

Now ask yourself this question: Whom would you rather hear a politician lift a quote from–Winston Churchill or a sleazy outfit like the KKK?

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